Armstrong said will initiate an average 6 percent price increase on residential and commercial resilient sheet and tile products, beginning with shipments on October 24, 2005. In a statement, the company's vp, product management - resilient sheet, Allen Cubell said the move was necessitated by the rising price in fuel. "Persistently high oil and natural gas prices, exacerbated in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, combined with escalating transportation costs and increasing global demand, have resulted in unprecedented price escalation for key PVC based materials. The prices of oil-based raw materials and energy sources have reached new and sustained high levels. Our continuing productivity improvements cannot offset the full cost impact of these increases, making this price increase necessary.

"We do anticipate that hard surface flooring will continue to gain market share. As a company, we will continue to focus on driving the productivity, innovation and quality initiatives to meet demand and to provide our customers superior products and timely service on all Armstrong products," said Cubell.