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Official statistics reveal infrastructure bucking construction recession

Official figures from the Office of National Statistics have revealed a 10% increase in infrastructure spend in 2009 and a 15% surge in the last quarter compared with the previous three months.

New infrastructure output in the 12 months to the fourth quarter of 2009 was 10% higher compared with the previous 12 months and the fourth quarter of 2009 was15% higher compared with the previous quarter.

However, the total volume of construction output in the fourth quarter of 2009 fell by 1% compared with the third quarter of 2009. All new work rose by 5% while repair and maintenance fell by 9%.

The total volume of construction output in the 12 months to the fourth quarter of 2009 fell by 11% compared with the previous 12 month period.

The total volume of new work in the 12 months to the fourth quarter of 2009 was 13% lower compared with the previous 12 months but was 5% higher in the fourth quarter when compared with the previous quarter.

 

Volume of Construction output by all agencies at seasonally adjusted constant (2005) prices

YearInfrastructure (£M)All work (£M)
20029,05398,520
20038,217104,013
20047,133107,852
20056,499107,006
20066,008108,364
20076,189110,952
20087,120109,716
20097,81197,152

 

Volume of Construction output in 2009 by all agencies at seasonally adjusted constant (2005) prices

QuarterInfrastructure (£M)All work (£M)
11,80324,088
21,93124,048
31,89624,638
42,18224,377

 

“Further data released this morning continues to highlight the ongoing strain on the hard pressed construction sector. Total output in the industry is now estimated to have declined by 1.1% in the fourth quarter of last year compared with the previous estimate of a drop of 0.9%,” said RICS chief economist Simon Rubinsohn.

“This report shows that the strongest contributions came from those areas most closely aligned to the public sector, something mirrored in our own construction survey; however comments from our members point towards a faltering in the capital spending programmes as we approach the general election. With the more subdued trend in private sector workloads this casts some doubt on just how sustainable any improvement in the construction sector is likely to prove as attention turns to scaling back the budget deficit in the wake of the general election. Significantly, the latest RICS Construction Survey suggests that over the next twelve months output is likely to be broadly flat.”

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