UK construction sector growth eases in July
Growth in the UK construction sector eased in July amid shortages of staff and supplies, according to a survey released on Thursday.
The IHS Markit/CIPS construction purchasing managers’ index fell to 58.7 from June’s 24-year high of 66.3. This was below consensus expectations for a reading of 64.0 and signalled the slowest overall increase in construction output since February.
Still, it remained above the 50.0 mark that separates contraction from expansion.
There was slower growth in all three main categories of work – residential, civil engineering and commercial – with survey respondents citing difficulties keeping pace with the recent surge in demand for construction projects, particularly due to raw material supply shortages and shrinking sub-contractor availability.
Tim Moore, economics director at IHS Markit, said: “July data marked the first real slowdown in the construction recovery since the lockdown at the start of this year. It was unsurprising that UK construction companies were unable to maintain output growth at the 24-year high seen in June, especially with widespread supply shortages and constrained capacity to take on additional orders. The loss of momentum spanned all major categories of construction work and was most pronounced in the house building sector.