GFK: positive outlook for 2024 after a difficult 2023

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While 2023, marked by multiple crises, did not quite live up to expectations of recovery, the global Consumer Technology and Durables market is expected to turn positive again in 2024 according to GfK. Although the year-on-year revenue for 2023 looks rather bleak, it is still above the pre-pandemic level of 2019. This is mainly driven by the IT and Small Domestic Appliances sectors, which performed well above 2019 revenues at +16% and +21%, respectively. According to the global GfK Consumer Life study, price was an increasingly important factor in consumers’ purchasing decisions in 2023. However, alongside these price-conscious consumers, crisis-resistant customers with higher incomes have remained in the market. This has meant that premium products have continued to outperform the market average. Demand was particularly strong for appliances with features that make life easier, such as wet and dry vacuum cleaners. These grew by +2% year-on-year in the first ten months of 2023, while vacuum cleaners in general declined by -2%. Products that cater for individual’s specific lifestyles also performed better, such as hot air fryers for healthier-cooking (+42% growth versus +38% for fryers in general). “After two years of decline, we expect the global T&D market to finally turn positive again in 2024, albeit at a small scale”, says Ines Haaga, GfK’s insights expert for Consumer Technology and Durables. The following trends and developments are expected to drive growth in 2024: almost four years after the pandemic, replacement cycles will kick in; the global divergence in market performance is expected to increase in 2024 as national GDP continues to grow in emerging regions like India, while China and the US slow compared to 2023; inflation is expected to fall further in 2024, which will boost global consumer confidence.