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Sales of construction products rise in Q2

Manufacturers of construction products have reported an increase in sales for the fifth consecutive quarter.

The Construction Products Association’s latest state of trade survey found that 100 per cent of manufacturers reported a rise in sales in the second quarter of 2014, compared with the same period in 2013.

Meanwhile 83 per cent said they expected sales to continue to rise over the coming year.

Almost 90 per cent of firms reported a rise in costs, primarily due to wages and salaries, and 62 per cent said costs would continue to rise in 2014.

The survey found that lack of demand remained a concern for light-side manufacturers, but capacity pressures may be emerging at heavy-side firms.

New policy director

Peter Caplehorn has joined the association as the new policy director and deputy chief executive. 

Formerly Technical Director at design practice Scott Brownrigg, Mr Caplehorn is the deputy chair of the Building Regulations Advisory Committee and currently chairs CB (the British Standards Institution’s strategic committee for construction) where he was recently focused on the new CDM Regulations, and application of BIM within construction regulations and future building regulations. 

He said: “For many years I have worked closely with product manufacturers and the supply side of the industry. I am delighted to be joining the Construction Products Association to further these relationships and support this valuable sector. As a practical designer I understand the need, and also the frustrations, this part of the construction industry faces. I’m looking forward to helping with the challenges and opportunities ahead.”

Construction Products Association senior economist Kallum Pickering said: “These results confirm the construction products industry is firmly on the path of recovery.

“All firms reported that sales increased compared with the second quarter of last year and, looking forward, no firms expect sales to fall over the coming year.”

He added: “Product manufacturers increased headcount for a fourth consecutive quarter, and whilst this is positive news, data on cost inflation suggests that wages are beginning to make a significant contribution to rising costs for firms.

“Ninety-five per cent of heavy side firms and 80 per cent of light side firms indicated that wages and salaries contributed to cost inflation in Q2.”

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