03 July 2007 | Paul Snell
Growth in the construction sector was at its fastest for more than three-and-a-half years in June.
According to the latest CIPS/NTC PMI for construction, where a figure above 50 represents growth, activity in the sector recorded a figure of 60.1 in June, compared with 58 in May. This was the highest level of activity for 43 months.
An increase in the number of new orders fuelled the growth, rising to 63.4 in June, a six-year high, compared with 58.9 in May. Buyers attributed the growth in new orders to successful planning applications and improved marketing.
Activity in the three main sectors, housing, commercial and civil engineering all rose at a faster rate than in May. Activity in the commercial sector increased from 54 in May to 59.1 in June. Yet overall growth was still lower than in housing, which was 61.3 in June, and in civil engineering, which recorded 59.5.
Employment was also up slightly on May's figure, rising from 57 to 57.3 in June. Buyers remained optimistic about future activity, recording a figure of 71, but this was the lowest level of optimism in 12 months.
Further coverage of PMI reports is available at http://www.supplymanagement.com/pmi