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Fri April 23 2021

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Materials sales soften but confidence remains undimmed

3 Aug 15 Sales of aggregates and ready mixed concrete softened slightly in the second quarter of the year but are still firmly ahead of last year’s levels.

Year-on-year, crushed rock sales were up 4% in the second quarter, sand & gravel was up 4.2% and asphalt by more than 10%.

However, compared to the first quarter, asphalt and concrete sales were broadly flat (+0.3% and -0.7% respectively) and aggregates sales declined (crushed rock -3.7% and sand and gravel -7.2%).

The data are seasonally adjusted, stripping out the effect of such factors as weather variations and public holidays.

The Mineral Products Association, which represents producers and collates the statistics, said that expectations for demand remain positive for 2015 and the following years.

Chief executive Nigel Jackson said: “Although there has been an underlying slowdown in recent construction activity, prospects are positive given the renewed government commitment to housing and infrastructure improvements and boosting city/regional development. It will be critical that the operation of the planning and regulatory systems enable the industry to meet future and growing demands and support UK competitiveness and it is very positive that the government is very engaged with MPA on these issues.”

MPA sales volumes, % change on same period of the previous year

Asphalt

RMC*

Crushed Rock

Sand & Gravel

Mortar

Construction output (£m)

2013

3.9%

11.5%

7.5%

7.8%

15.0%

0.1%

2014

8.8%

3.6%

13.5%

7.2%

18.6%

9.8%

2014 Q3

6.7%

7.3%

14.2%

8.5%

17.3%

10.1%

2014 Q4

9.3%

3.1%

13.9%

2.7%

10.4%

8.6%

2015 Q1

14.3%

8.4%

11.5%

8.7%

7.0%

4.7%

2015 Q2

10.1%

3.6%

4.0%

4.2%

7.1%

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MPA sales volumes, % change on previous period (seasonally adjusted)

Asphalt

RMC*

Crushed Rock

Sand & Gravel

Mortar

Construction output (£m)

2013

3.9%

11.5%

7.5%

7.8%

15.0%

0.4%

2014

8.8%

3.6%

13.5%

7.2%

18.6%

9.5%

2014 Q3

3.9%

3.6%

2.7%

7.7%

7.8%

2.2%

2014 Q4

4.2%

0.3%

3.0%

1.4%

0.8%

0.2%

2015 Q1

1.3%

0.5%

2.3%

3.2%

-1.2%

-0.2%

2015 Q2

0.3%

-0.7%

-3.7%

-7.2%

0.2%

(0.0%)

* Sum of fixed & site plants

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MPU
MPU

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