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Construction economy decline accelerates in November

Contraction of the UK construction economy accelerated last month at its fastest rates in over a decade, figures from the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply revealed today.

The UK Construction Purchasing Managers’ Index for November showed that new orders, industry output, employment, sub-contractor usage and buying activity continued to fall at the fastest rate since the survey began in April 1997.

But on the positive side for contractors, the survey also showed an end to input price inflation as fuel and raw material costs fell.

The index – which is an indicator designed to provide a single figure measure of trends in construction sector activity – stood at 31.8 in November, a new survey low.

The reduction in total industry activity was evident across all three of the monitored sub-sectors – housing, commercial engineering and civil engineering.

Falling global demand exerted downward pressure on input prices in November – UK construction companies reported lower input costs for the first time in nearly ten years.

The CIPS/Markit Input Prices Index posted a series-record low of 44.7.