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The US baby products market has been forecast to increase by 6% in constant value terms over the next five years, to reach a total of US$2.5 billion by 2017.
Despite a recovery in the US economy, the birth rate in the US continued to decline in 2012, as the 2008/2009 recession continued to impact Americans' thoughts about parenthood. Consumers of all income levels were worried about their ability to spend on larger homes and day care costs after having children.
In particular, pessimism about future economic prospects affected lower-income consumers. While Americans of all income groups remain concerned about the economy, the higher-income groups have generally not seen a decline in income and have seen a rise in housing prices.
Demand has grown due to a rising number of babies to be catered to, partly because people are starting families later. Product innovation and development has allowed retailers and manufactures to widen the market, using new technologies and advanced marketing approaches.
According to a recent market report, 'Baby and Child-Specific Products in the US,' the US baby products market was led by Johnson & Johnson Consumer Products with a 17% value share in 2012. The company is synonymous with baby care, and has had a strong presence in bath products, hair care and skin care for decades.
Many parents grew up with Johnson's products, and consider them to be safe and of high quality. The standard Johnson's Baby brand is the number two brand in baby and child-specific products, and benefits from being used by hospitals and other health professionals.
With the US economy showing signs of recovery, and a rising stock market, affluent consumers have begun to resume spending on discretionary items, albeit more cautiously than in pre-recessionary times.
The birth rate is expected to remain virtually flat, leading to limited growth opportunities for baby-specific products outside the premium natural/organic offerings.
For more information on the US baby products market, see the latest research: US Baby Products Market
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