Total construction activity climbing from 53.2 in July to 54.5 in August, according to the most recent Construction Purchasing Managers’ Index.
Construction activity in the UK saw its sharpest rise for five months, according to the most recent Construction Purchasing Managers’ Index.
Total construction activity climbing from 53.2 in July to 54.5 in August. The pick-up in growth was underpinned by sharper increase in commercial activity, which reached an eleven-month high, and civil engineering, which recorded its strongest growth since February 2004.
In contrast, house activity in August slipped to 45.4, the third decline in four months.
Volumes of new orders received by UK constructors rose at their fastest pace in nine months during August. Panellists linked the latest increase to higher demand from both the private and public sector. There were also reports of greater spending on marketing.
Employment and input buying rose in response to higher levels of new business, with rates of growth sharpening since the previous month. Job-creation was the strongest since April, while the seasonally adjusted Quantity of Purchases Index recorded 55.2, signalling the fastest rise in purchasing for five months.
Confidence among UK constructors regarding future activity levels rose to a four-month high in August, with optimism underpinned by recent gains in new business and expectations that further contracts will be acquired in the coming months. However, some panellists were concerned about prospects for housing, citing the latest fall in activity and the possibility of further interest rate rises.
Subcontractor usage in the UK construction economy fell for the fifth consecutive month in August, while the availability of sub-contractors declined for the first time in over a year. The quality of sub-contracted work deteriorated marginally and sub-contractors’ average charges rose at their fastest pace since May 2005.