Job loss in final quarter of 2008 rose 50% on previous period

The UK construction industry suffered 48 000 redundancies in the three months to December 2008.

Data from the Office for National Statistics showed a 50% rise in job cuts on the previous quarter, when the industry was hit by 31 000 redundancies.

The figure was almost five times higher than the same period in 2007, when 10 000 people lost their positions.

Construction suffered some of the worst job cuts in the final quarter, though manufacturing industries, finance and business services and distribution all fared worse.