This table is intended to show the profit companies are making from building. Balfour Beatty tops the stakes here with £96m, although its figures are boosted by the fact that all of its activities – including considerable facilities management work for its private finance initiative contracts – are included under contracting.

Amec, which came in second, made £31m on a margin of only 1%. In contrast, HBG/Edmund Nuttall, which has 40% of Amec's turnover, came third with £25.8m, thanks to its enviable 2.8% margins on contracting. Bottom-placed Laing continued to suffer the aftershocks of its financially disastrous Cardiff stadium project with operating losses of £5.3m.