Survey Finds Rising Demand Boosting UK Construction

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5th February 2014 15:59 - Construction

According to the Markit Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), Britain’s construction sector is expanding at the fastest rate since 2007. The unofficial data suggests that the UK’s small and long-suffering sector is recovering rapidly.

The Purchasing Managers Index, based on a survey of construction companies, rose from 62.1 in December to 64.6 in January, the highest since August 2007. Numbers above 50 indicate an expansion in activity.

House-building activity increased at the fastest pace in almost a decade, a reflection of rising house prices and confidence. There was also a strong increase in commercial buildings and civil engineering projects.

David Tinsley, an economist at BNP Paribas, said:

“Overall, the construction PMI tends to suggest the contraction we saw in the official Q4 construction data is an erratic. That said, the construction PMI and the official statistics have often only had a weak relationship in the past, and the very wet January weather may still impact the hard data for the first quarter. Still, it would be a surprise if the sector did not make a solid contribution to GDP growth over 2014.”

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