The latest CAB State of the Market figures for Q1, 2015 continued to highlight a positive long term outlook for the aluminium in building sector despite industry concern over the availability of skilled workers, with wages and salaries being the key driver of cost inflation. 79% net balance of respondents expected sales volume growth for the year ahead. Headlines:
- 67% of CAB members, on balance, reported a rise in sales over the past year.
- Members reported that they anticipate sales rising over the next quarter (80%) and the next 12 months (79%).
- Costs continued to rise with 46% net balance reporting a rise in costs in the last 12 months (74% in Q4/2014) and 50% expecting a rise over the next year (78% in Q4/2014)
- Wages & salaries (93% net balance) were reported for the 4th successive quarter as the major cost factor closely followed by Raw materials (67%), with Fuel Costs negative on balance (-7%)
- 29% net balance of companies expected to operate at over 90% of capacity over the next 12 months (40% in Q4/2014)
- Headcount increase for the year ahead slowed again (40% net balance) compared to 57% in Q4/2014 but was behind the wider construction sector figure of 67% net balance.
- Demand (33%) and Capacity (20%) were once again factors ‘likely constraints on activity over the next 12 months’. Encouragingly 20% of respondents stated ‘No constraints’ (17% in Q4/2014)