Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Construction Down

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Construction Down

Article excerpt

FEARS that the UK economy will contract again have been fuelled by the latest snapshot of the construction industry, which revealed a worse than expected fall in activity.

The Markit/CIPS construction purchasing managers' activity index fell to 49.3 last month, down from 50.9 in October and below the reading of 50 which represents growth.

City experts had predicted a 50.5 figure but reductions in house building and commercial projects drove construction activity lower.

Tim Moore, senior economist and survey author at Markit, said: "A protracted decline in workloads, the double-dip UK recession and shrinking investment spending has made 2012 a year to forget for the construction sector."

He warned that signs of a greater squeeze on client budgets suggested construction output was yet to hit "rock bottom".

Howard Archer, chief European & UK economist at IHS Global Insight, said the economy was going to be reliant on the services sector to avoid a renewed GDP dip in the fourth quarter. …

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