In his Autumn Statement, Chancellor Hammond said the UK economy has confounded commentators here and abroad with its strength and resilience.
Britain’s builders and contractors have also confounded commentators with strong sales in Q3, the first three months following the Brexit vote.
The Builders Merchants Building Index (BMBI), which tracks builders’ merchants’ sales to builders and contractors using GfK data, reports September sales up 3.2% year on year, and Q3 sales up 3.8% on the same quarter last year.
Sales in September continue to be strong, building on an excellent performance over the first nine months of 2016. Sales are up 5.1% on the first nine months of 2015, bucking the construction trends identified by the Office of National Statistics (ONS).
Initial ONS figures are estimates based on around 40% of the data and subject to regular revision as data comes in. The latest ONS figures have been revised up to 0.2% for September and 0.1% for Q3 compared to 2015, but there may be further revisions.
The US presidential election result has sent tremors through financial and currency markets but, as with the Brexit vote, Britain’s builders’ merchants, builders and contractors have continued to supply a robust market.
Derrick McFarland, Managing Director Keystone Group UK, BMBI’s Expert for Steel Lintels commented: “Steel Lintel sales in Q3 were encouraging, showing continuing improvement on the same months of last year. If Government delivers on its pledge to significantly increase the supply of housing, we hope to see modest growth continue.
Innovative products are contributing to demand in the steel lintel market. Most notably in Q3, growth in high performance steel lintels were ahead of standard steel lintels.
The unique aspect of high performance steel lintels is that they significantly reduce cold bridging across the lintel and, combined with other high performance materials, can eliminate expensive renewables and other high cost design solutions.”
Visit the BMBI website to see the detailed report.
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