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October 16, 2013

A consumer survey conducted Oct. 10-13 by ORC International on behalf of ICSC and Goldman Sachs found that 40% of consumers have tightened their belts in the face of the federal government shutdown.

Of the demographically representative sample, lower-income households were more affected than their upper-income counterparts: Those with income of $35,000 or less were 15% more likely to curb spending than those making at least six figures.

October 9, 2013

Sears, Roebuck & Company, together with Whirlpool Corporation, filed petitions for writ of certiorari with the Supreme Court Oct. 7, according to global law firm and Whirlpool representative Mayer Brown.

The retailers are asking the Court to review class certifications related to Sears v. Butler and Whirlpool v. Glazer, two similar class action suits that allegedly cast a large umbrella over varied defects involving Whirlpool washing machines. Each certification involved complaints of musty-smelling front-loading washing machines.

September 10, 2013

Every year, select brands in the home improvement and building product distribution channel are recognized for the value they bring to the industry.

August 8, 2013

Barbara Kux has been appointed as a member of the Supervisory Board of Henkel AG & Co. KGaA.

A member of the management board of Siemens AG and its chief sustainability officer, Kux takes the place of Thierry Paternot who, for personal reasons, resigned his tenure at the beginning of the year. 

Kux will be nominated for by-election as a shareholder representative on the supervisory board at the next Annual General Meeting in April 2014.

July 30, 2013

Representative Blake Farenthold (R-Texas) earned the praise of lumber dealers by reintroducing the "Innocent Sellers Fairness Act."

Here's how National Lumber and Building Material Dealers Association (NLBMDA) officials called it:

"NLBMDA applauds Representative Farenthold for his effort to bring balance to our legal system by recognizing that business owners that only sell products, and are not involved in the manufacturing process, should not be held liable for defects that they did not create."

July 22, 2013

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June 19, 2013

It's a question as old as the cash register: What's the key purchase motivator for the consumer — brand or price?

Everyone has his or her opinion. On top of it comes new research from Media, Pa.-based ICR, the international research and consulting firm, conducted on behalf of HCN, investigating how consumers are currently shopping various home improvement categories.

Short answer: It all depends on the category.

June 17, 2013

In a nod to significant growth resulting from his initiatives, Jim Fay has been named Creative Specialties International's 2012 Representative of the Year.

Fay is recognized for his long-term strategic planning and success in helping the company navigate a changing marketplace, which culminated in an 89% year-over-year growth in 2012. He orchestrated the effort to develop a proprietary lead-generation source and launched a CSI/Moen approval campaign among developers and designers (CSI is the bath hardware division of Moen).

April 8, 2013

The great H.L. Mencken wrote: "A good politician is quite as unthinkable as an honest burglar."

Is he right? I don't know, but it seems as if Washington, D.C., is quite a mess these days, with a mounting deficit and acrimonious factions.

Still, one of the highlights on the HCN calendar is the National Lumber & Building Material Dealers Association (NLBMDA) Legislative Conference in Washington, D.C. This year's event, in addition to several rounds of strategizing and lobbying, featured presentations from not one, but two politicians.

April 5, 2013

Employer representatives have testified before a congressional panel that they support the expansion of the federal government’s E-Verify electronic employment verification system, which experts agree will be a central piece of comprehensive immigration reform.

March 19, 2013

At the 2013 NLBMDA/WDMA Legislative Conference, a congressman rips out-of-control regulations.

March 12, 2013

Pittsburgh-based Snavely Forest Products named Brett Kerr as the company’s newest mass merchant representative.

February 21, 2013

All channels of distribution are not created equal.

But what are the strengths of each channel of distribution in the mind of the contractor?

December 20, 2012

Quick Drain USA, a provider of channel drains and shower solution systems, has recognized  Dan Beaudet Co. as its representative of the year.

Jim Van Landingham, VP residential sales, and Barbora Hulikova-Eriebach, CEO, presented Ben Molloy of Dan Beaudet Co. an award plaque along with $500 at the Quick Drain National Sales Meeting held recently in Denver.

August 7, 2012

California cities dominate the top-ten Eco-Friendliest Cities list assembled by small business-oriented web site thumbtack.com

San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose rank one, two and three on the list, which measures the per capita prevalence of a representative group of ten types of green services. More details about the data are here.

Here are the top ten eco-friendly cities from the list:

June 11, 2012

An increase in multi-family mortgage insurance premiums (MIPs), part of the current administration’s fiscal 2013 budget proposal, will slow down construction of apartments in secondary markets, a National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) representative told Congress on June 7.

June 8, 2012

An increase in multi-family mortgage insurance premiums (MIPs), part of the current administration’s fiscal 2013 budget proposal, will slow down construction of apartments in secondary markets, a National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) representative told Congress on June 7. 

June 4, 2012

Pliers and hand-tool manufacturer Channellock has promoted Erin Bahurinsky to online account representative/data coordinator.

In her new position, Bahurinsky will be responsible for maintaining and enhancing all aspects of internal and external data as they relate to the sales, marketing and customer service departments. Bahurinsky will develop and maintain online distributors as an account representative and refine online social media sites.

May 23, 2012

U.S. Representative Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson has sent a letter to U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) president and CEO Rick Fedrizzi, urging changes to the treatment of forest products under the council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) 2012 rating system. LEED is currently taking public comment as it revises its evaluation process and standards, which will be released in November of 2012.

May 8, 2012

A representative of the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) testified before a U.S. Congress subcommittee on May 8 about concerns surrounding compliance challenges that have emerged from the 2008 Lacey Act, especially concerning wood imports.

April 9, 2012

Costello’s Ace raised $10,000 for the Muscular Dystrophy Association’s (MDA’s) Make a Muscle … Make a Difference program last month. 

The Deer Park, N.Y., operator of 19 neighborhood hardware stores on New York’s Long Island raised the funds by collecting donations that were recognized by shamrock decorations displayed throughout the store.

January 6, 2012

Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics said its Green Glue Noiseproofing Compound and Sealant is now available at Menards stores.

Previously, Green Glue products were obtainable only through the Green Glue website or a network of specialty acoustic distributors. Now the products are available for contractors, DIYers and home theater enthusiasts to purchase directly in the building materials section of 232 Menards stores in the Midwest, the company said.

December 20, 2011

Knipex Tools has announced the promotion of Todd Shumate from the position of sales manager to VP sales, North America. All field operations will report directly to Shumate, including channel managers, regional managers and the KTLP nationwide manufacturers' representative network.

Prior to joining the Arlington Heights, Ill., company in 2008, Shumate held regional sales manager positions at Minerallac/Cully, Progress Lighting/Hubbell Lighting and Klein Tools. He also held management roles at Dalloz Safety and Chase Ergonomics.

August 2, 2011

A survey of a nationally representative sample of 1,000 consumers conducted by San Francisco-based research firm MarketTools suggests that their next home improvement project will most likely take place in some room other than the kitchen or bathroom.


Almost a third of future projects were described as “other room” in the study, conducted July 8 to 10 using MarketTools ZoomPanel of opted-in consumers.