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Strong growth in building activity

GROWTH of UK housebuilding activity accelerated again in March, having eased in February, a survey has found.

The survey, published yesterday by the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply, pointed to continuing strong growth in overall UK construction activity as the sector recovers from a grim period during and in the immediate wake of the Great Recession of 2008/09.

CIPS's construction ­activity index came in at 62.5 in March on a seasonally adjusted basis, little changed from 62.6 in February and well above the level of 50 deemed by CIPS to separate expansion from contraction.

The housing activity sub-index rose to 64.4 in March, from 62.1 in February, having stood at 67.3 in January.

Rapid growth in housebuilding activity comes amid a raft of measures put in place by the UK Government to inflate the residential property market. CIPS's survey also showed continuing strong growth in activity in the other two sub-sectors covered, commercial property construction and civil engineering.

Employment growth in the construction sector remained strong. And UK construction firms were more confident about prospects for their activity in 12 months' time than at any point since January 2007.

Tim Moore, senior ­economist at Markit and author of the construction survey, said: "Housebuilding reclaimed its place as the main driving force behind the resurgent UK construction sector in March, following some weather-related disruptions during the previous month.

"The rise in residential construction was one of the sharpest experienced over the past 10 years."

Contextual targeting label: 
home improvement

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