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November 2011 | Angeline Albert
construction sector picked up with robust growth and a rise in new orders in
October, following a state of near-stagnation in September.
CIPS CEO David Noble described the
performance as “nothing to get excited about”.
The Markit/CIPS UK Construction PMI
registered a five-month high of 53.9 in October, up from 50.1 in September.
The steepest increase in new business since the
spring has been aided by competitive quotes from construction firms. As
a result of more new orders, the sector’s firms have continued to recruit staff
and increase buying activity.
Noble, said: “UK construction output experienced a rebound in
October, and accelerated at some pace after a broad stagnation in September.
It’s still nothing to get excited about however. Due to current economic
conditions, it may be some time yet before we start seeing the sustained growth
the sector really needs.”
And confidence across the industry about future
business activity dived to its lowest in almost three years. Input cost pressures have increased, with respondents reporting higher
fuel and raw material costs as the main sources of upward pressure.
Commercial-based construction output was the main
driver of overall growth. In contrast, civil engineering activity was broadly stagnant,
while the housing sector continued to suffer with a decline in activity
recorded for a fifth successive month.