02 November 2007 | Paul Snell
Activity in the construction sector continued to increase last month, but was at its slowest for eight months.
According to the latest CIPS/NTC Purchasing Managers' Index, where a figure above 50 represents growth, activity in the sector reached 57.4 in October, slightly down on September's figure of 60.3.
There was a slowdown in growth in the three main construction areas, housing, commercial and civil engineering, recording 54.6, 58.1 and 57.2 respectively. Commercial activity now has the strongest growth of the three, compared with civil engineering in September.
Expansion of new orders and staff levels also increased, but continued to slow last month. Successful tenders caused new orders to record a figure of 61.7. Higher workloads meant employment reached 57.2.
The decline in supplier delivery times was at its slowest for six months, although the figure of 42.7 remained below the no-change mark of 50.
Input prices also recorded their slowest increase for 26 months, although the figure of 61.7 in October still demonstrated high prices for buyers.
* Further coverage of PMI reports is available at http://www.supplymanagement.com/pmi