The UK Markit/CIPS Purchasing Managers’ Index® (PMI®) for construction offered some hope for the beleaguered sector where activity rose to an eight-month high.
New business expanded and confidence was at a high, though small falls in employment were recorded. The overall figure was posted at 54.3, up from 51.4 in January.
"The construction sector's relatively buoyant start to 2012, continued in February, as sustained growth affirmed the industry's ongoing recovery from the financial crisis in 2008. However, the increase in new work from sizeable contracts was tempered by the moderate dip in overall employment.
"This has not dampened confidence however, which is at the second highest level seen in 21 months owing to greater visibility of contracts down the pipeline.
"Commercial construction remains the star performer but housing continues to be subdued. This is symptomatic of weak demand that has been prevalent in the market. This week's Bank of England mortgage lending figures, however, bode well for better housing performance ahead."
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