A rough and ready way to judge future levels of constrution work is to look at the level of planning applications being submitted.

You have got to be a bit careful about drawing conclusions too quickly, as many factors influence the decision to apply for planning consent, not just the state of the economy or prospects in the construction and property markets.

But I was very interested to receive some analysis of data collected by the construction data people Barbour ABI on the level of planning applications up to October this year.

Yes, there have been some changes to the planning regime in the interim, but a 27% drop from October 2007 to October 2008 is definately cause for concern for those who are looking up the pipeline for their next job.

You can view the press release here: Barbour ABI plan apps