Sharp fall in construction output as house-building slumps
Construction output fell -2.6% between December 2014 and January 2015, the fourth monthly decline in the past six months.
The main factor behind the decline in January was a sharp fall in house-building of -5.1% on the month. There has been only one larger monthly fall in house-building since the coalition took office (-6.6% in October 2011).
Compared with the same month a year ago, total construction output fell by -3.1% in January, down sharply from +5.3% in December, and the worse figure for nearly two years (since March 2011).
Construction, annual growth
With manufacturing also falling into January, these first glimpses of activity in the first quarter are not encouraging.