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James E. Veale, CPA, MBT October 1, 2011 at 8:50 am

With the numbers in early this morning October 1st, there is no question this last fiscal year was horrible. Standard endorsements were less than 70,000 and total endorsements were 73,131; last fiscal year they were 79,150. That is a 6,000 difference and last fiscal year there were no Savers.

Without “Home Depot,” “Lowe’s,” or even “Ace,” I doubt if the hardware store industry would expect bigger sales the year following the year all three of these giants dropped out of their industry. This fiscal year total Standard endorsements could be less than 57,000. Saver endorsements should be up this fiscal year; however, Wells was reportedly 40% of that market when it withdrew from the industry so the expectation in that area may have to be adjusted down. There are many indications that total endorsements could go under 60,000 for this fiscal year.

With their Big Three gone, there would be little question that the remaining hardware stores would be gearing up for a great year in sales for their related companies. It is no different with our industry. But in a bad economic environment no one would be expecting sales for the entire hardware store industry to expand; neither do we.

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