Construction recovers to pre-pandemic level

Aaron Morby 3 months ago
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The construction recovery has got back on track returning to its pre-pandemic level after the record 41% cliff fall in March.

Construction activity recovers after 41% fall last March
Construction activity recovers after 41% fall last March

Latest construction output figures for November show the industry has pulled off a near V-shaped rebound led by infrastructure while commercial still lags.

New work activity in November jumped 3.5%, more than offsetting a 0.6% fall in repair and maintenance.

Overall this saw a 1.9% rise in month-on-month all work taking construction 0.6% above the February pre-pandemic level of output.

All new work sectors returned to growth apart from public new housing and public other new work, which fell by 2.4% and 2.8% respectively.

Infrastructure led the way with 9.6% month on month growth, followed by industrial at 3.8%, and even commercial which edged up 0.2%.

Fraser Johns, finance director at Beard, said: “In recording a seventh consecutive month of growth, the construction sector has bucked the national trend where the economy shrank overall during the period.

“But what is also encouraging is the reverse in the slow rate of growth that we’ve seen, going from 1.0% in October to 1.9% in November.

“While we hope that the vaccine rollout and a Brexit trade deal in place should lead to less uncertainty broadly, we are still faced with new strains of the virus and a national lockdown, with the impact that has with schools closed and restrictions at every level.

“Realistically the fallout for businesses from Brexit could yet take months to fully understand which means an element of volatility in the short to medium term. However, the new business secretary’s open letter to the construction industry is welcome reassurance in this current period.

“As we now face several more weeks of lockdown, it’s clear that the construction sector has had to adapt but that keeping sites open and projects going was the right thing to do, for jobs and the wider economy.”

 

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