There's more good news for the UK construction sector, as it continues its onward march, expanding for the eighth month in a row in December.
The Markit/CIPS puchasing managers' index for UK construction PMI came in at 62.1 (62.6 November), above expectations of 62.0 and buoyed by a further big rise in housebuilding.
Tim Moore, senior economist and Markit, commented:
The latest survey highlights that construction companies enter 2014 with the wind in their sails. Most encouragingly, the improving UK economic outlook is helping boost private sector spending patterns, meaning that the construction recovery has started to broaden out from housing demand and infrastructure projects to include strong growth in commercial building work.
Speaking on the impact the jump in activity has had on suppliers, David Noble, chief executive officer at the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply, said:
The natural consequences... have been the continued squeeze on stocks at supplier level and the lengthening of delivery times. These pressures, alongside increasing business costs, will remain in 2014, but with hopes that they won’t prolong.