Sales in the four quarter of 2016 were up 5.5% on 2015 and December 2016 sales were up 4.0% on December 2015.
According to analysis by GfK, total sales revenues in the sector topped £5,440m in 2016.
Particularly strong fourth quarter performances were seen in landscaping, heavy building materials, kitchens & bathrooms, and ironmongery. Warmer, drier weather helped sales of landscaping products rise 10.3% in Q4, year-on-year, and heavy building materials rise 7.1%.
The Builders Merchants Building Index (BMBI) tracks builders’ merchants’ sales to builders and contractors using GfK’s point-of-sale tracking data. The BMBI represents more than 80% of the value of the builders' merchants' market.
John Newcomb, managing director of the Builders’ Merchants Federation, said: “Despite fears around the Brexit vote mid-year, another strong set of results for the final quarter of the year is certainly encouraging. In addition to GfK’s national data in the BMBI report, the BMF’s own sales indicators confirm that the final quarter of 2016 wrapped up three years of growth in the sector.”