The Construction Trade Survey provides a timely pan-industry assessment of current and expected conditions within the construction industry. It collates data from construction companies, engineering contractors and building products suppliers to produce a detailed quarterly report on the state of the construction industry.
The strength of the recovery has been centred on private housing, infrastructure, commercial developments and public non-housing projects such as education and health.
Other key findings in the report, which covered the final quarter of 2014, include:
22% of contractors had problems in recruiting on-site trades, down from 31% in Q3 2014.
70% of companies had difficulties finding bricklayers, up from 41% in the previous quarter.
53% of contractors stated that private housing output increased in Q4.
68% of firms revealed that raw material costs had increased in Q4 relative to the previous quarter.
57% of firms said that labour costs had risen in Q4, relative to Q3.
Half of construction product manufacturers expect more than a 5% growth in sales this year, with a further 20% expecting a more modest increase.
Economics director at the Construction Products Association, Noble Francis, commented on the rising costs faced by construction companies, saying:
Only product manufacturers felt the effects of falling oil prices in Q4. Contractors, SMEs and civil engineers continued to report elevated costs, which implies any gains from a wider slowdown in inflation are yet to filter down the supply chain.
The Construction Trade Survey is published on a quarterly basis in May, August, November and February.
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