Construction trends have improved, a building industry report has revealed.
The Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply (CIPS)/Markit survey discovered firms were more confident about the future.
Its Construction Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) rose from 29.3 in December to 34.5 and is now at its highest for three months.
Director of professional practice at the CIPS, Roy Ayliffe warned that the results probably reflected “the exceptional weakness of previous months more than any significant easing in the rate of contraction”.
“The remainder of this quarter will be important in ascertaining if the rise in the indices in January was an aberration or a real sign of a turning point in the cycle,” he went on.
The CIPS noted the contraction in new work eased sharply and confidence among contractors increased.
Howard Archer at Global Insight urged caution, he told Reuters: “With the housing market and commercial property sectors still under serious downwards pressure, it is hard seeing the construction sector returning to growth any time soon.”