Reaction to latest ONS construction industry output figures for May

The Vinden Partnership says the decrease in construction output is a ‘surprise’.

Reaction to latest ONS construction industry output figures

The Office of National Statistics has released its latest figures on the construction industry’s performance ad revealed the sector experienced its biggest fall in three years.

Comparing against March last year, construction output fell by 4.5% – the biggest year-on-year drop in three years.

March saw output in the construction industry fall by 3.6% compared to the previous month.

The first quarter of 2016 (January to March) saw a 1.1% decrease in comparison with the final quarter of last year (October to December).

Comparisons between Q1 of 2016 and Q1 of 2015, reveal construction output decreased by 1.9%.

Key factors in the fall in the sector’s performance in March were a fall in new work (0.6%) and repair and maintenance work, which decreased by 1.9%.

Positives could be taken from the performance of new house building, with the ONS reporting an increase of 4.8% over the fourth quarter of 2015.

Both public and private new housing saw rises of 4.2% and 4.9% respectively.

Total housing was up 3.4% compared to the same period last year.

Martin Bennett, a Regional Director of The Vinden Partnership – a leading multi-disciplinary consultant company to the built environment – said: “Recent surveys have shown that the construction industry has experienced growth in 2016 even if it has been subdued due the uncertainty surrounding the EU referendum. These latest results from the Office of National Statistics therefore come as a bit of a surprise.

“I am encouraged by the reported figures on new housing. The strength of this sector will be a key driver in future construction industry growth and make a huge difference to those people looking to get on the property ladder.”