Construction buyers report August bounce back

Grant Prior 3 years ago
Share

Construction buyers saw workloads recover in August from the post-Brexit lows of July

The bellweather Markit/CIPS Construction PMI index recovered 49.2 in August from 45.9 in July.

It is still below the neutral 50 mark but companies are now more optimistic about future trading with many feeling Brexit fears were overdone.

Mike Chappell, Global Corporates managing director for construction at Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking, said: “The past month has seen a number of the bigger players in the sector report robust results with a relatively upbeat outlook, suggesting there may have been less negative impact from the EU referendum result than was originally feared, at least at the top of the market.

“This data provides further reassurance, although the headline reading still remains below 50, which separates growth from contraction.

“The order books of larger firms, many of which benefit from diversified revenue streams, appear to be in good shape, while several have either increased or restored their dividends.

“That said, anecdotal evidence indicates those further down the chain – such as mid-tier contractors and SMEs – are less bullish and more likely to adopt a ‘wait and see’ approach.

“For many businesses, the focus remains on the short-term. For one thing, most will be following closely the various data for a true reflection of the health of the economy.

“Firms are also thinking about the chancellor’s upcoming Autumn Statement when they will learn whether their hopes of an increase in infrastructure spending are to become a reality.”

Tim Moore, Senior Economist at Markit and author of the Markit/CIPS Construction PMI, said: “The downturn in UK construction activity has eased considerably since July, primarily helped by a much slower decline in commercial building.

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

Latest news

Interserve finance chief quits

Mark Whiteling exits weeks after banks take control in pre-pack deal
15 hours ago

Green light for reworked Paddington Cucumber

Reuben Brothers gain revised planning for landmark west London tower
13 hours ago

Winners unveiled for £400m Dounreay decommissioning

28 firms named on major nuclear framework: Full list of winners
23 hours ago

Guinness plans largest ever homes scheme in Leeds

Plan for over 900 homes at Leeds South Bank site
23 hours ago

Opinion: Lack of talent at the top is hurting construction

Time to promote a new generation of younger directors to end the "over-optimism" bonus culture
22 hours ago

Ex-Crossrail chief Wolstenholme wanted more bonus cash

Project chief challenged decision to deny him extra pay for performance
2 days ago

Waiting over for £340m Belgravia council estate rebuild

Westminster council seeks firm for Ebury Bridge Estate rebuild
22 hours ago

Morrison takes on refurb job from failed contractor

Morrison to complete renovation scheme after original builder went bust
2 days ago

Call-up for £110m Southsea seafront defence job

Portsmouth city council aims to shortlist three firms to bid eight year project
23 hours ago

Eight placed on £200m London Universities framework

Graham, Speller, 8build and Walter Lilly among preferred list
1 day ago

Boost your online presence – join the Enquirer Directory

New site for suppliers and buyers showcases products, services and latest stories
12 months ago

Giant ‘concreteberg’ blocks sewers in Islington

Work starts to chisel out 105 tonne blockage as hunt starts for culprits
2 days ago

Lendlease chief jumps for Crown Estate top job

Dan Labbad to take Crown Estate chief executive role at start of 2020
2 days ago

Race starts for £2bn YORcivil framework places

Eight firms to share £2bn pipeline over four years
2 days ago

Green light for £150m Bolton Church Wharf regen plan

Muse approved to start demolition and work up details of scheme
2 days ago

Wills Bros wins £31.5m Maybole Bypass in Scotland

5.2km bypass on A77 in south west Scotland will employ 165 workers at peak
2 days ago

VINCI starts work on new £100m Birmingham hospital

Contractor gets underway on three-year build programme
7 days ago

Pay row set to escalate on HS2 enabling works site

Dispute set to intensify over rates paid by labour supplier
7 days ago

Four civils firms scoop £2.6bn flood and coastal framework

Kier breaks into Environment Agency preferred contractors list
7 days ago

Costain making engineers redundant at tech centre

Contractor cutting jobs at technology division it bought for £17m in 2016
7 days ago

Dozen firms win £500m City of London deal

Morgan Sindall, Osborne and Speller Metcalfe among winners
7 days ago

New £3m fund to improve construction procurement

Companies invited to bid for cash grants in CITB-led efficiency drive
7 days ago

Green light for vast Nottingham Boots Island scheme

Developer Conygar plans to build a 2m sq ft mixed-use scheme
7 days ago

Goldman Sachs bankrolls Brum’s tallest resi project

Builder Sisk can now start work on 42-storey Broad Street skyscraper
7 days ago

SME contractors agree 2.75% pay deal for workers

Annual pay increase will see hourly craft rates rise to £12.79
1 week ago

Lakehouse subbie goes after Sureserve for cash

Specialist wins adjudication award after contractor goes bust
1 week ago

Firms on alert for M4 Newport £185m enabling works

Bidders day planned ahead of July invitation to tender
1 week ago

Robertson hires Laing O’Rourke infrastructure ops director

Bryan Glass will head Robertson's civil engineering business in Scotland
1 week ago

Wates starts £24m Shoreham flood defence

Enabling works to pave way for 540-home Free Wharf scheme
1 week ago

£400m Eastern Highways Framework up for renewal

Essex County Council to invite bids for third generation framework in June
1 week ago

Contractor services