A Construction Industry Council workload survey has recorded a major slowdown in the fourth quarter of 1998.

The quarterly survey of construction professionals’ activity found that only 15% of firms reported increased earnings, a drop of 8% compared with the third quarter of 1998. This was the second-lowest level of activity recorded in the past 18 months.

Robin Nicholson, chairman of the CIC, said: “Although the results reflect the industry’s fears of a downturn in construction, they may also mean that it will avoid the long-term problems of sustaining a booming market for too long.”