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New construction output shows first growth since 2008

New figures show that total new construction output in current prices, while still relatively low, has had its first quarter of growth since 2008 Q1.

A new report by management consultancy Leading Edge shows that total new construction output (in current prices) grew in 2009 Q4 to £13,737M, a rise of 0.5% compared to the figure in 2009 Q3.

This is the first time total new construction output in current prices has grown since 2008 Q1, but the figure still represents a 23% fall since the high point of £17,903M.

The report shows how the new construction market has changed during the boom and bust years between 2006 and 2009, and what has happened in each of the public, commercial, housing (public & private), infrastructure and industrial sectors.

New construction output

The figures show that there have been mixed fortunes for specific sectors. Comparing 2009 Q4 with Q3, new construction output:

  • Declined by 14.4% in the private commercial sector
  • Increased by 1.0% in the private housing sector
  • Increased by 7.4% in the non-housing public sector
  • Increased by 11.2% in the infrastructure sector

 

In particular, the government’s financial stimulus package has ensured that both new public housing and non-housing output saw steady growth in the last three quarters of 2009. This helped support the total new construction output figures.

Leading Edge managing director Mel Budd said: “With the latest new order figures showing little sign of encouragement, particularly in the private industrial and commercial sectors, a continuation of strong public spending is vital for the health of the industry.

“However, with large cut backs in public spending forecast for later this year it is far from certain that this low level of growth will be maintained through 2010.”

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