Building’s foundation of confidence: Growth prospects rebound from post-Brexit slump


The structure trade, representing 6 per cent of UK output, contracted for the third straight month, but its deportment was much stronger than expected.

While housebuilders have shrugged off Brexit refers, the latest Markit/CIPS purchasing managers’ index (PMI) snapshot unmistakable to a slowing rate of decline in commercial building work, while laical engineering activity stabilised.

The August PMI reading, at 49.2, remained underneath the 50-point mark denoting growth, but this com red with the seven-year low 45.9 in July.

Actors reported new work falling at the slowest ce since May, while staving levels and business expectations for the next 12 months picked up.

But a weaker compound resulted in purchasing costs rising for the third straight month as input inflation hit its highest direct for five years.

Markit senior economist Tim Moore said: “The downturn in UK construction interest has eased considerably since July.

“Construction firms cited a nascent salvage in client confidence since the EU referendum result and relatively steady spurt of invitations to tender in August.”

CIPS chief executive David Honourable said the picture was “more about stabilisation than searing advancement”.

Mike Chappell, managing director for construction at Lloyds Commercial Banking, drew a merit between the robust performance of bigger com nies and anecdotal evidence requiring midtier contractors and SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises) are “less bullish and multitudinous likely to adopt a ‘wait and see’”.

IHS Global Insight chief UK economist Howard First said: “The outlook for construction still looks difficult, given apt to ongoing caution of many clients to commit to major projects in rticular in the commercial real estate sector.

“The construction sector hopes Theresa May’s regulation sees increased spending on infrastructure as a way of boosting the economy in the face of Brexit uncertainties, and enlarges its attempts to boost housebuilding.”

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