Slump in infrastructure activity hits construction sector

A fall in infrastructure work has helped cause a “slump” in UK construction activity in the early part of 2018, according to new research.

The latest edition of the Economic & Construction Market Review from industry analysts Barbour ABI showed the value of new construction contracts awarded in February was £4.9 billion – a 24% decrease compared with the same time last year.

Residential housing “dominated” the sector, with a six-month high total contract value of £2.1 billion. However,  infrastructure contract value fell by a massive 48%. The only other sector to suffer a decrease was education.

Michael Dall, lead economist at Barbour ABI said, “Whilst the slide in Infrastructure is disappointing, it is encouraging to see the increases in value for the majority of the construction sectors, particularly commercial and retail, which was in the midst of a three month slump. With uncertainty surrounding the industry and economy in general, improvements in various sectors should instil confidence, despite the overall figure being subdued.”