- The market is expected to begin to recover in the second half of 2010, after declining at double-digit rates between 2007 and 2009. The recovery will be led by the upturn in residential remodeling spending. Residential remodeling spending is being stimulated by an estimated 9.6% increase in existing home sales during 2010, and follows a 4.9% gain in 2009. These trends indicate that the recovery in stone products will be led by rising sales of replacement kitchen and bathroom countertops and floor tiles. The builder market is also expected to turn upwards in late 2010, due to the 23.7% increase in residential building permits in the first quarter of this year. However, the estimated 25.0% drop in nonresidential construction spending during 2010 will continue to be a drag on industry demand.
In addition, Ceramic Tile and Stone Consultants surveyed quarries and manufacturers, along with the leading fabricators and the largest importers to develop a snapshot of the products sold and the end-use markets targeted by these competitors. A separate report section provides trends in the relatively profitable manufactured stone market, which includes precast concrete products that look like stone and engineered agglomerated stone products. The section tracks sales of manufactured stone countertops, fabricated structural components, flooring and blocks and bricks. Readers can see how these products penetrated the markets for natural stone.