The exciting climax to The Masters amidst the reassuringly familiar sights and sounds of Augusta National always gives golfers a feeling that the golf season has officially started. This sense of stability is reflected in the Golfalot.com price index for the UK, with a solid month of consolidation across all sectors.
The Index rose 0.21% to maintain recent growth and provide continued evidence of the strength of the UK Golf sector as enthusiasts tee off in earnest for the season proper.
The clubs sector experienced slight growth of 0.3% with a fall of 0.9% in the Fairway Woods sector being offset by small increases across all the remaining club sectors, most notably Wedges, which grew by 2.6%.
The fall in Fairway Woods continued the trend from March of retailers looking to price competitively on the newer models, particularly the popular Nike SQ Dymo and Cobra S-91 ranges.
By contrast the growth in the Wedges sector can be put down to the exit of some lower priced wedges from Petron and Benross, coupled with the realignment of March discounts on some models in the Titleist Vokey range, increasing the average price of a Wedge for April to £56.66. The next best performer was the Utility Clubs sector, which grew by +1.5%, boosted by the introduction of the new Cobra Baffler TWS.
The stability in the UK Price Index continued in the accessories sector, which maintained the level of the previous month with small gains in both the balls and trolleys sectors being offset by slight drops in Golf Bags and Golf Shoes as retailers look to compete for the business of players investing in gear for the new season.
The Bags sector headlined last months index with a stunning 9% growth and this month maintained much of that strength, falling by only 1%, with small discounts on some of the new Sun Mountain and Ogio models that had entered the index in March.
Golf Shoes also dropped slightly, down 0.5%, but with small gains in the Golf Balls (+0.3%) and Trolleys (+0.4%) sectors, there was no overall change in the Index for accessories.
Whilst 2009 still promises to provide challenging conditions in the context of the wider economy, the stability in the Golfalot.com Price Index for April indicates that the UK Golf Sector appears to be in good shape as the season gets fully underway.
With the better weather of the summer months and the excitement of the Masters kick starting the migration back to the course all the signs are that this stability promises further encouragement for the months ahead.
For more detailed information view the Golfalot Price Index graphs for the UK & USA online at http://www.golfalot.com/News/PriceIndex.aspx