There was better news in the property and development sector last week, where concern over the impact of the credit crunch had prompted falls.

In a sign that the first wave of alarm was subsiding, Hammerson saw its share price rise 5.8% to £13.02, while British Land rose 2.9% to £12.77. However, some analysts warned the upturn was likely to be short-lived.

Meanwhile, shares in property services consultant Erinaceous continued to tumble after it announced that it was no longer in talks over a takeover. Shares at the firm, which had been in discussions with private equity houses including HBOS, fell 23.3%, to 121.5p.

ROK was the industry’s star performer last week, as the contractors continued largely to escape the knock-on effects of the uncertainty. Rok, which continued to trade well off strong interim results announced the previous week, saw its share price rise 24.6% to 238p. Keller also had a strong week, up 9% at £10.01, while Kingspan rose 6.2% to £11.69.