February 2018 UK Markit/CIPS construction PMI 2 March 2018
- Marginal rise in total business activity, led by commercial work
- New work declines for second month running
- Strong input cost inflation persists in February
Civil engineering was the worst performing category of construction work, with activity falling at the sharpest pace for five months. A soft patch for house building continued in February, meaning that residential work remained on track for its weakest quarter since Q3 2016. The main bright spot was a solid upturn in commercial construction, which expanded at the fastest rate since May 2017
Price pressures remain as firms said input costs from higher fuel prices, raw materials and wages has pushed up costs.
The construction industry has been one of the tightest worker sectors in the UK with skill shortages noted over a year ago. It’s not a big enough sector to carry much weight into mainstream wgae numbers though. The sector has been slipping for a while and moved into contraction late last year. It’s been more of a sideways move since the strong run from 2016.
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