UK construction output has suffered its first consecutive quarter-on-quarter decline in over five years as a decline in both repair and maintenance hit growth.
Construction output fell by 0.9% between July and September, after a fall of 0.5% between April and June, according to the Office for National Statistics.
One of the biggest areas of concern is new private commercial work, which dropped by £236m, while total housing repair and maintenance was down £165m between July and September.
‘Months of false dawns on Brexit negotiations have whittled away confidence and left many businesses feeling punch drunk,’ says managing director Blane Perrotton from property consultancy Naismiths.
BREXIT BREAKTHROUGH FUELS CONSTRUCTION STOCKS
He concedes the breakthrough in Brexit negotiations may have ‘unblocked negotiations for now’ but warns if confidence and clarity continue to stall, the construction industry will struggle to grow.
This could shed light on why the market is overlooking the decline in construction output as the progress in Brexit negotiations to trade talks could boost confidence in the sector.
Among the small caps, shares in James Halstead (JHD:AIM) were up 2%.