The uncertain state of the construction industry has been helped with a strong performance in October, which has surprised some industry experts.
The construction industry reached a five-month high in October, according to the Markit/CIPS UK Construction PMI, where orders and activity grew significantly compared to the previous months.
The index recorded a figure of 53.9 in October, which is up from 50.1 in September. Any figure over 50 represents a growth in activity.
Despite these figures, the state of the industry is uncertain at the moment, and the outlook remains gloomy for the foreseeable future. But at least these figures are hopefully a step in the right direction.
Sarah Bingham, Economist at Markit and author of the UK Construction PMI said:
“UK construction output improved in October, as new orders recovered from September’s modest decline.
The outlook for the sector remains uncertain, with October seeing a further weakening in sentiment regarding business expectations. The increase in employment recorded was fractional, despite the rise in new business and activity.
This suggests that constructors remain tentative about the longevity of the sector’s growth profile.”
February’s figures for the construction industry indicate an index of 56.5 for February, compared to 53.7 in January. Anything over 50 represents a growth in the industry.
The Markit/CIPS UK Construction PMI Index reports that the figures for last month were the highest since July 2010, which has surprised many experts who predicted a slump following January’s growth.
This shows that the construction industry is recovering from the recession and the fluctuating economy, after a disastrous December saw the industry suffer, due to the freezing weather and snow, which blighted the UK.
Sarah Ledger, who is an economist at Markit, the authors of the Index, said in a statement:
“February’s survey showed continued recovery in the UK construction sector following December’s weather-related decline in activity, with output rising at the fastest rate in eight months on the back of strengthening growth of new business.”
We are not clear of danger yet, as the construction industry is expected to endure a rocky 2011, but February’s figures definitely show that the Industry is headed in the right direction.