Construction confidence hits nine-year high
Construction buyers are at their most bullish for more than nine years.
The surge in confidence comes despite a slight dip in the latest Markit/CIPS UK Construction PMI index to 57.8 in March from 60.1 in February.
But the outlook for business prospects for the next 12 months hit its highest level since February 2006.
David Noble, Group Chief Executive Officer at the Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply, said: “The main takeaway from this month must be the highest levels of confidence seen in the construction sector for almost a decade.
“Though there may be some low-level obstacles still to come, the sector gets the green light as there is evidently belief that the future for the construction sector is a sustainable one.
“The construction sector’s strong recovery took on a gentler, quieter pace, with the housing sector continuing to lead the way a head – but only just, and with the commercial sector a close second.
“A hint of restraint prevented employment levels rising much further .
“Some firms attributed slower momentum to concerns about the looming General Election , but new business still rose at a respectable pace compared to the average over the last few years.
“Strong demand for construction materials was a key development and though major shortages are not yet apparent, there is some evidence that suppliers of construction materials must up their energy levels to quicken delivery times and raise capacity.”
Tim Moore, Senior Economist at Markit and author of the Markit/CIPS Construction PMI, said : “UK construction companies are highly upbeat about their prospects for growth over the course of the next 12 months, helped by improving economic fundamentals, strong order books and a healthy pool of new invitations to tender. ”
Grant Prior | Thu 2nd April | Construction Enquirer