Construction firms are recruiting at fastest rate on record, according to Markit/CIPS


Construction sector job creation hit its highest level on record in July, according to the latest survey of purchasing managers.

The latest Markit/CIPS survey, which measures the rate of increase or decrease in the activity of purchasing managers, showed a slight decrease in activity in July, with a score of 62.4, down from 62.6 in June, but still well above the 50.0 mark that separates expansion from contraction.

But the survey, published this week, showed construction firms recruited more staff in July than at any point since April 1997, when the survey began.

The survey attributed the sharp increase in job rates to increased workloads and ongoing efforts by firms to boost capacity, with firms also increasing staff in response to concerns about

subcontractor availability.

The survey also recorded the sharpest rise in housing starts since November 2003 and sharper expansion of civil engineering activity. However, commercial construction activity increased at a slower pace than the previous month.

Tim Moore, senior economist at Markit, said the figures suggested the construction sector was “enjoying its strongest cyclical upswing since the global financial crisis”.

He added: “A new record rise in employment highlights that construction firms are increasingly confident about the sustainability of the upturn.”