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Reaction to latest UK Construction PMI

The latest statistics have been released by IHS Markit/CIPS UK Construction PMI, showing growth in construction sector has slowed down.

Construction activity has fallen for the first time in 13 months with sustained drops in new work, civil, and commercial sectors, cited as the main drivers of the problem,

From the data collected between September 12-28, the index now registers at 48.1, down from 51.1 August, the first time the index has fallen below the crucial 50.0 threshold since August 2016. Housing activity was the bright spot within the figures with construction activity creating an expansion in September.

Respondents highlight worries over politics and economics, with questions over future EU activity prominent.

Peter Vinden, Managing Director of the Vinden Partnership, reacted to the figures:

“With the figures showing the sharpest drop in activity since July 2016, falls in new orders, and a struggling civil sector, contractors will be far from optimistic.

“The figures are a fair reflection of the political and economic uncertainty that we are facing across industry. As the figures fall below the crucial threshold of 50.0, we need to look at pushing an overall construction objective and build confidence within the commercial market again.

“However, with the growth in housing reflecting the government’s push for new homes, I can see civil engineering coming back to the fore with the implementation of several government infrastructure projects on the horizon, such as HS2.

“Even with the latest results, and continued uncertainty, construction is a resilient sector, and we can expect future growth with government support and investment.”