UK construction sector stays steady

CIPS 4 April 2011

Latest PMI data for construction.

Confidence in the construction sector remains at low levels reports Markit/CIPS Purchasing Managers’ Index® (PMI®).

The figure posted at 56.4, only fractionally weaker than Februrary's eight month high of 56.5. New business growth remained marked whilst employment has fallen due to the need to control costs.

David Noble, CEO of CIPS said: “On the surface there wasn’t much of a change in the construction sector in March, but there is plenty to put businesses on edge about their future prospects. Fractionally weaker levels of activity and a more noticeable slowdown in new orders contributed to an easing of business confidence, which remains at historically low levels.

“The spectre of government spending cuts is causing the greatest concern, particularly as government stimulus starts to crumble. We may also be at the tail-end of temporarily higher activity levels seen after Q4’s weather disruption.
“Similarly, although March saw the third monthly growth in a row of residential construction activity and staff reduction was it’s weakest in many months; other indicators showing continued volatility in house prices and poorer consumer confidence mean there is still a great deal of uncertainty.”

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