COLUMBUS, Ohio — Heating, Air-conditioning & Refrigeration Distributors International's (HARDI’s) distributor members’ average sales increased by 19.4 percent in January 2018, according to HARDI’s monthly TRENDS report.

The average annualized growth for the 12 months through January 2018 is 6.9 percent.

“January and February are the two least important revenue producing months of the year for HARDI distributors,” said Brian Loftus, market research & benchmarking analyst, HARDI. “January sales can be very volatile because of weather disruptions. The results this January got a big boost from the colder-than-normal temperatures that apparently led to some equipment disruptions.”

We would be skeptical of 19.4 percent if not for the weather event backing it up, said Connor Lokar, senior economist, HARDI.

“From an economics perspective, U.S. single-unit housing starts rose 9.2 percent over January 2017,” Lokar said. “The first half of the year will remain near a double-digit growth pace, but we expect that to downshift to a mid-single digit pace by year end.”

The Days Sales Outstanding (DSO), a measure of how quickly customers pay their bills, is now at 47 days.

“The DSO is up a couple of points from the December report,” said Loftus. “Forty-seven is the absolute midpoint of recent reports for this metric for this time of year.”

HARDI members do not receive financial compensation in exchange for their monthly sales data and can discontinue their participation without prior notice or penalty. Participation is voluntary, and the depth of market coverage varies from region to region. An independent entity collects and compiles the data that can include products not directly associated with the HVACR industry.

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Publication date: 03/12/18