Here’s a question I ponder quite a bit. Why do the official figures show that construction grew in the second and third quarters of last year when to everyone else construction has remained mired in the slough of a nasty recession?
Puzzling isn’t it. Even more puzzling that the estimates for construction’s contribution to the GDP data suggest the industry’s output was stable in the fourth quarter of 2009.
What is even more puzzling for me is that the CIPS/Markit UK Construction PMI index – an indicator that I have always considered to shade very much on the jolly side – sees construction still in recession this January having been in retreat for just a month short of two years.
“Construction continues to be the worst performing sector of the UK economy – struggling in the face of credit supply shortages and overall economic uncertainty,” says David Noble, Chief Executive Officer at the buyers' body CIPS.
Now if the rest of the world, well the majority of those with a fair inkling as to what is going on, is right and construction has remained in recession and the official statistics are wrong, this should mean an adjustment down in the construction output stats.
Not that it will mean that.