The Markit/CIPS Purchasing Managers’ Index® (PMI®) also showed that civil engineering reamined the weakest performing sub-sector, and with a slight decrease in new orders, employment remained relatively stable. The index posted at 49.4, down from March's 47.2.
David Noble, CIPS CEO said: "The UK's construction sector showed signs of stabilisation in April, as it recorded its slowest decline in six months. This is a reasonable signal that things are a bit better in the industry but that said, construction is still contracting and witnessing marginal declines in new orders.
"Government efforts to boost the economy may be filtering through as housing activity has risen in every month since February, and experienced its strongest performance for a year in April. Compared to the end of last year, business confidence is picking up, indicating a robust degree of optimism for the year to come. The moderation in cost pressures linked to lower commodity prices is acknowledged to have brought some relief to the industry.
"Recent GDP figures reinforce the view that construction is still a weak spot for the Uk economy. Commercial and civil engineering activities remained the laggards of the sector in April, burdened by longer supplier lead-times and a workforce down to bare bones, making it hard to see any major shifts in momentum in the near future."
For press enquiries, call the Press office on 01780 756777or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. The PMI data is available to purchase.