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Chicago-AHR Expo exhibitors are predicting 2018 to be a good year for business, according to the 2018 AHR Expo Exhibitor Economic Outlook Survey. Of the 81 exhibitors who responded to the survey, 61.7% think 2018 will be a “good” year for business prospects, while 27.2% responded they think it will be an “excellent” business year. The 2018 results are a slight uptick compared to the 2017 survey. In 2017, 53.7% of the 136 exhibitors who responded thought 2017 was going to be a “good” year for business while 23.4% predicted an “excellent” business year. Fewer people-only one respondent-predicted 2018 to be a “poor” business year, compared to three people who did so in the 2017 survey. Another difference between the 2017 and 2018 surveys is where exhibitors expect to see the best business prospects.  In 2017, exhibitors predicted maintenance and replacement had the best prospects, but in 2018, new construction was forecast to be the best prospect. The increase in expecting 2018 to be a positive business year could be tied to how well the exhibitors fared in 2017. According to the survey, more than half of the responding exhibitors, 59 of 80, said they expect their sales to increase at least by 5% during 2018. Thirteen exhibitors reported they expect their sales to increase by less than 5%, while eight predicted their sales will stay the same.

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