British construction PMI bounces in April: Survey

The British construction activity index in April posted above the 50.0 threshold for the first time since January 2019, according to a survey published Thursday by the IHS Markit/CIPS, a London-based global information provider.

Figures showed that the Construction Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) stood at 50.5 in April, up from 49.7 in March, hitting the highest point this year.

Duncan Brock, group director at the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply said “although the sector marginally moved into growth territory in April, there’s a huge question mark over whether there will be any further improvements in the coming months as new orders fell for the first time since May 2018.”

Tim Moore, economics associate director at IHS Markit, said that “a return to growth would normally be considered a positive month for the UK construction sector, but the weakness outside of house building gives more than a little pause for thought.”

“Commercial activity and civil engineering both remained on a downward path in April as political uncertainty led to delays with spending decisions,” Moore added.