But autumn orders fall behind summer levels

Construction orders have risen 7% in the year to October compared with the previous year, new figures show.

The statistics from the department of trade and industry found construction found orders between August and October rose 16% compared with the same period in 2004. However orders from August to October fell 2% compared with the preceding three months with falls in all sectors except public and housing association orders and private commercial orders.

Public and housing association housing orders in August to October rose 4% compared with the previous three months. However the sector is small and so its statistics are prone to wide variations. Private commercial orders rose 13% in the same period while private housing orders fell 6%, infrastructure orders fell 14% and private industrial orders fell 13%.