Trade association the Federation of Master Builders this week revealed that its year-end surplus was up 54% to £374,000.
The figures come as a stark contrast to its rival trade association the National Federation of Builders, which reported it had lost more than £500,000 in the 15 months to March this year.

Ian Davis, the FMB's director-general, said the FMB planned to achieve a 5% surplus through to 2005.

He said: "When other trade associations are struggling with deficits or black holes in their financial positions, the surplus we've generated allows us to reinvest in improved services for members, and strengthens the FMB's financial position."

The NFB has announced plans to cut costs through redundancies and by slashing its £525,000 annual services bill to the Construction Confederation.

The NFB is one of seven groups affiliated to the confederation. The confederation said last week that it was would like to see the NFB's books.

  • A survey of FMB members has revealed that they have little confidence in the government's quality mark scheme. Davis said members were having to pass the costs of the scheme on to customers, putting the industry at a disadvantage.