Builders' Merchants News

Construction recovery stalls

Published:  29 April, 2011

UK: The country managed to avoid a double dip recession, but has experienced the worst slide for construction since 2009.

The estimate from the Office for National Statistics revealed 0.5% expansion for the UK. A 4.7% dive for the construction industry in the first quarter knocked 0.3 percentage points off wider economic growth, according to a report in the London Evening Standard.

Despite bouncebacks for larger services and manufacturing firms, the overall figures mean Britain's recovery is back where it started six months ago, as growth wiped out the 0.5% decline in the final quarter of last year.

Charles Davis, managing economist at the Centre for Economics and Business Research, warned that "UK recovery still has a long way to go".

Experts, however, questioned the steep fall for construction. The Construction Products Association said the "extremely surprising" figures came against a backdrop of strong industry surveys and exceptionally mild weather during the period.