-- FBI reveals higher gas prices having a greater impact on furniture --

Charleston, SC September 1, 2005 – The Furniture Buying Index drops three points to a reading of 84. The Index has dropped to its lowest reading in two years, but still remains positive. Higher gas prices are now having a greater impact on furniture buying.

Britt Beemer, Chairman of America’s Research Group, said, “When gas prices hit $3.00 a gallon, consumers began re-thinking big ticket purchases like furniture.” He continued, “Furniture retailers should be pleased that the Index only dropped three points considering the rapid rise in gas prices in the last thirty days.”

Beemer added, “Even though the Index has dropped, FBI still remains over 80 and stronger than in early 2002.”

The Furniture Buying Index is compiled each month by America's Research Group from interviews with 5,000-8,000 consumers across the country. In a typical month, 80 percent of the consumers interviewed can name a specific furniture item they intend to buy. The Index's mark signifies what percent of the benchmark 80% actually have a particular item in mind.

Britt Beemer is chairman of America's Research Group, a full-service consumer behavior research company based in Charleston, SC. ARG provides research and strategic planning services to leading manufacturers and retailers of consumer goods across North America.

For more information call:
C. Britt Beemer

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