Latest News Latest VisionWatch Consumer Barometer Reflects 4.3 Percent Increase in Total Vision Care Market Revenues By Staff Friday, May 10, 2013 12:27 AM ALEXANDRIA, Va.—The latest VisionWatch Consumer Barometer, covering the 12-month period ending March 2013, reflects a 4.3 percent overall increase in revenues for vision care products and services in the U.S. compared to the prior year period. The total vision care market, as defined by The Vision Council’s VisionWatch survey, reached $35.15 billion in the 12-month period, and includes dollars spent at retail at all retail types at any retail location and spent on the sale of either spectacle lenses (including Rx Sun), frames, contact lenses, plano sunglasses, OTC readers or revenue earned by refractive surgery or eye examinations. The number does not include sunglass clips and reflects the dollars spent by U.S. adults ages 18 and over. The report shows an increase in Rx spectacle lens sales of 6.4 percent to $10.7 billion in that 12-month period, while frame sales at retail rose 2.5 percent in dollars to $8.68 billion during the year ending March. Contact lens sales, in dollars, climbed 5.3 percent to $4.1 billion in that period while plano sunglasses increased 3.9 percent in retail dollars to $3.57 billion. Also during the 12 months ending March, VisionWatch reported that eye exam revenues reached $5.28 billion. The number of eye exams conducted within the last six months for the period ending March 2013 was 49.2 million, per the Consumer Barometer, compared to 48.0 million in the prior measured six-month period ending December 2012. Independents conducted 68.1 percent of the eye exams in the six months ending March, even with the prior year’s six month period ending in March 2012. Chains conducted 31.9 percent of the eye exams, for the two six-month periods. The Eyeglass Future Purchase Intent Index, which reflects consumers’ saying they are “likely to purchase within the next six months,” reached 107 for the six months ending March 2013, an optimistic increase and second to the 109 index point one year prior for the period ending March 2012. More detail on the Consumer Barometer is available from The Vision Council and from Steve Kodey, director of research at firstname.lastname@example.org. Additional reports are now also available for Vision Council members for the Q1 period.