Builders’ Merchants saw major increases in sales of Tools (+12.3%), Plumbing Heating & Electrical (+11.4%) and Heavy Building Materials (+11.1%) in October 2017. These categories all saw double digit growth compared to October 2016 (assisted by one additional trading day).
Overall sales figures for October 2017 were 10% higher than the same month last year (assisted by one additional trading day).
The figures are contained in the ‘Builders Merchants Building Index' which tracks builders’ merchants’ actual sales using GfK data. In addition to the strong annual growth, October sales were 5% ahead of September, with one extra trading day this month, and the latest three months (August to October 2017) were 6.2% up on the same period last year (no difference in trading days).
Although the ONS have today released new statistics that show construction output has contracted over recent months, they also find record growing in the infrastructure sector and an increase in housing orders.
Despite initial concerns over the impact of Brexit and an uncertain climate on the industry, the BMF states that the continued robust sales figures achieved by their members demonstrates the adaptable nature of the industry.
Chief Executive of the BMF, John Newcomb said: “Our figures are demonstrating that the builders merchants’ industry is resilient in the face of uncertainty. We continue to see strong growth overall, and across a wide range of categories in the industry, indicating the adaptability of merchants in responding to the needs of consumers.
“These figures further reinforce our understanding that the builders’ merchants’ industry is delivering the building blocks for growth and is a vital part in supporting construction, infrastructure and housebuilding across the country.”