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Tue February 20 2018

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Sub-contractor Pay Trends January 2018

Hudson Contract delivers the most accurate indications of pay trends across the construction industry, using payroll data for over 2,200 construction companies to publish the average pay for a spectrum of 17 different trades now split across ten regions.

It’s been a sluggish start to 2018 – exactly as expected.

“January’s trends are down sharply on December,” Hudson Contract Managing Director Ian Anfield observes “But that’s what almost always happens in January. You could even call it a New Year’s hangover.”

The push to complete projects ahead of the festive break has been a construction industry habit for decades, and then it always takes a few weeks to get properly back to full speed. “It’s been the pattern for the past four years,” Ian Anfield continues. “At first glance a monthly earnings slump of 11.8%, which is what has happened, could be cause for grave concern. But last year’s corresponding figure was earnings down by 13%, so the story that is really being told is about a seasonal trend.”

National Weekly Average Earnings January 2018:  £777

Region January 2018 Average Change from December 2017
North East £685.00 -6.57%
North West £712.00 -10.96%
Yorkshire & Humber £741.00 -11.07%
East Midlands £811.00 -11.47%
West Midlands £774.00 -15.76%
Wales £768.00 +0.65%
East of England £840.00 -10.36%
London £777.00 -12.87%
South East £789.00 -10.41%
South West £745.00 -11.14%

The Good News

To add further perspective, the average freelance builder earned £24 a week more in January than this time last year. “That works out to 3%,” Ian Anfield says. “So it’s in line with UK inflation.”

January 17-18 graph
Increased earnings over 12 months - everywhere except West Midlands

It's been a particularly good year in Wales, where subbies have kept well ahead of rising prices, with increases that work out to an extra £90 a week. Only the West Midlands and London have failed to show significant growth - and in both regions, earnings are, in any event, above the national average.

As to be expected, the latest IHS Markit/CIPS construction survey is cautious, highlighting a 'subdued start' to 2018. Both commercial and civil engineering showed marginal growth, but house building tumbled. Despite this, many firms say they expect to win new business during the year keeping the mood of the industry positive.

"Brexit is still the big unknown," Ian Anfield says. "So much now depends on how the talks go and the shape our future relationship with Europe. Business craves certainty and construction is no different. Once it's clear whether it's deal or no deal, everyone can adjust to the situation and start to plan ahead with a measure of security."

To access Hudson Contract’s Construction Pay Trends index, please click here

North East

NORTH EAST Oct-17 Nov-17 Dec-17 Jan-18
CIVIL ENGINEERING £836 £845 £838 £735
ELECTRICAL £789 £810 £603 £480
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £541 £585 £585 £585
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £762 £759 £711 £653
INSULATION £748 £720 £819 £810
PLASTERING £707 £781 £685 £688
ROOFING £966 £1,016 £754 £745
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £427 £465 £531 £345
SHOP FITTING £712 £766 £743 £752
SPECIALIST TRADES £580 £589 £550 £690

North West

NORTH WEST Oct-17 Nov-17 Dec-17 Jan-18
BRICKLAYING £730 £751 £710 £705
CIVIL ENGINEERING £727 £725 £761 £675
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £793 £827 £868 £788
ELECTRICAL £878 £858 £844 £764
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £756 £851 £864 £728
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £734 £748 £813 £782
INSULATION £1,341 £1,203 £1,251 £996
JOINERY £813 £784 £791 £729
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £708 £1,222 £1,250 £979
PLASTERING £708 £651 £651 £481
PLUMBING £746 £818 £834 £761
ROOFING £837 £862 £987 £814
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £583 £582 £602 £524
SHOP FITTING £1,194 £1,170 £997 £1,124
SPECIALIST TRADES £873 £853 £879 £805
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £817 £601 £697 £660
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £702 £712 £740 £636

Yorkshire & Humber

YORKSHIRE & HUMBER Oct-17 Nov-17 Dec-17 Jan-18
BRICKLAYING £746 £759 £717 £651
CIVIL ENGINEERING £770 £783 £781 £736
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £578 £539 £547 £484
ELECTRICAL £850 £854 £741 £767
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £1,044 £979 £856 £810
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £804 £816 £817 £725
JOINERY £812 £847 £820 £828
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £915 £958 £906 £825
PLASTERING £770 £714 £756 £694
PLUMBING £621 £701 £715 £606
ROOFING £717 £747 £793 £667
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £576 £550 £568 £483
SHOP FITTING £1,259 £1,249 £1,170 £1,233
SPECIALIST TRADES £943 £953 £985 £825
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £873 £955 £953 £887
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £852 £904 £880 £702

East Midlands

EAST MIDLANDS Oct-17 Nov-17 Dec-17 Jan-18
CIVIL ENGINEERING £774 £800 £774 £747
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £730 £740 £781 £727
ELECTRICAL £1,139 £1,079 £1,094 £1,045
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £828 £983 £907 £804
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £1,049 £1,043 £1,082 £905
INSULATION £807 £849 £843 £727
JOINERY £813 £802 £802 £769
PLASTERING £733 £687 £756 £665
PLUMBING £917 £1,001 £974 £891
ROOFING £977 £882 £950 £898
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £761 £802 £782 £663
SHOP FITTING £1,367 £1,498 £1,374 £1,102
SPECIALIST TRADES £841 £950 £899 £853
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £897 £957 £1,164 £890
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £850 £866 £830 £736

West Midlands

WEST MIDLANDS Oct-17 Nov-17 Dec-17 Jan-18
BRICKLAYING £385 £394 £396 £337
CIVIL ENGINEERING £895 £902 £900 £771
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £666 £674 £641 £585
ELECTRICAL £1,106 £1,115 £1,183 £969
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £932 £936 £929 £781
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £889 £845 £867 £804
INSULATION £690 £802 £725 £740
JOINERY £912 £897 £802 £699
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £1,156 £1,279 £1,125 £954
PLASTERING £658 £743 £886 £621
PLUMBING £1,318 £1,202 £1,188 £1,177
ROOFING £555 £565 £567 £528
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £787 £979 £966 £553
SHOP FITTING £1,297 £1,415 £1,061 £1,072
SPECIALIST TRADES £939 £960 £940 £659
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £819 £795 £714 £608

Wales

WALES Oct-17 Nov-17 Dec-17 Jan-18
CIVIL ENGINEERING £726 £734 £735 £752
ELECTRICAL £696 £641 £717 £602
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £1,293 £1,276 £1,191 £1,234
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £924 £914 £870 £832
JOINERY £530 £575 £653 £519
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £492 £543 £518 n/a
PLASTERING £1,230 £1,393 £1,260 £1,200
PLUMBING £840 £850 £837 £787
ROOFING £538 £558 £521 £562
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £703 £708 £674 £728
SPECIALIST TRADES £766 £707 £663 £611
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £574 £585 £890 £849
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £1,191 £1,391 £1,329 £711

East of England

EAST OF ENGLAND Oct-17 Nov-17 Dec-17 Jan-18
BRICKLAYING £750 £754 £737 £705
CIVIL ENGINEERING £865 £886 £844 £794
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £669 £653 £687 £761
ELECTRICAL £1,289 £1,298 £1,303 £1,091
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £982 £953 £947 £972
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £914 £933 £912 £831
INSULATION £1,284 £1,336 £1,297 £923
JOINERY £1,270 £1,333 £1,219 £1,194
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £1,011 £1,062 £960 £1,039
PLASTERING £860 £848 £844 £915
PLUMBING £1,309 £1,323 £1,328 £1,024
ROOFING £785 £794 £729 £654
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £866 £862 £879 £763
SHOP FITTING £1,351 £1,194 £1,177 £1,023
SPECIALIST TRADES £971 £921 £973 £856
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £657 £754 £709 £767
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £698 £697 £677 £620

London

LONDON Oct-17 Nov-17 Dec-17 Jan-18
BRICKLAYING £792 £777 £759 £657
CIVIL ENGINEERING £803 £811 £802 £728
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £853 £854 £950 £583
ELECTRICAL £954 £984 £963 £949
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £1,199 £750 £750 £796
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £941 £946 £968 £793
INSULATION £936 £1,040 £925 £832
JOINERY £1,201 £1,067 £1,199 £1,157
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £1,147 £1,202 £1,208 £1,038
PLASTERING £1,105 £1,181 £1,150 £945
PLUMBING £1,010 £1,027 £1,049 £1,020
ROOFING £678 £665 £675 £712
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £1,145 £1,079 £1,131 £1,036
SHOP FITTING £751 £650 £734 £720
SPECIALIST TRADES £1,009 £1,041 £1,054 £854
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £781 £884 £835 £750
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £550 £643 £701 £547

South East

SOUTH EAST Oct-17 Nov-17 Dec-17 Jan-18
BRICKLAYING £813 £799 £725 £662
CIVIL ENGINEERING £767 £784 £815 £698
DEMOLITION & WRECKING £1,250 £1,287 £1,140 £923
ELECTRICAL £1,132 £1,157 £1,178 £1,048
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £782 £827 £790 £967
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £848 £839 £830 £773
INSULATION £691 £768 £823 £667
JOINERY £1,095 £1,120 £1,086 £946
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £1,118 £1,101 £1,115 £1,112
PLASTERING £658 £716 £734 £703
PLUMBING £1,010 £1,021 £1,041 £1,066
ROOFING £735 £778 £771 £681
SCAFFOLDING & LIFTING £799 £792 £762 £701
SHOP FITTING £1,249 £1,254 £1,415 £1,015
SPECIALIST TRADES £845 £819 £888 £758
STEEL & TIMBER FRAME ERECTION £739 £751 £787 £689
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £753 £838 £807 £790

South West

SOUTH WEST Oct-17 Nov-17 Dec-17 Jan-18
BRICKLAYING £500 £500 £500 £450
CIVIL ENGINEERING £710 £705 £753 £635
ELECTRICAL £722 £712 £790 £733
EQUIPMENT & OPERATOR HIRE £532 £538 £613 £528
GENERAL CONSTRUCTION £838 £817 £897 £863
INSULATION £1,312 £1,248 £1,313 £1,023
JOINERY £1,090 £1,085 £1,100 £1,088
MECHANICAL & ENGINEERING £733 £680 £652 £614
PLASTERING £736 £810 £825 £734
PLUMBING £1,314 £1,294 £1,388 £1,434
ROOFING £821 £792 £916 £787
SPECIALIST TRADES £1,103 £1,091 £1,080 £959
SURFACING CONTRACTORS £643 £645 £660 £620