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Construction reports eighth straight quarter of growth 

The latest Construction Trade Survey found that firms across the industry reported an eighth consecutive quarter of growth in activity in the first quarter of 2015.

Large contractors, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), civil engineers and product manufacturers all enjoyed growth in output in Q1 and further expansion is anticipated throughout 2015.

Construction Products Association economics director Dr Noble Francis said: “This momentum is set to continue, as it was in the private housing and commercial sectors that contractors registered growth in order books in Q1. Specialist contractors and SMEs also reported a noticeable upturn in new enquiries in the quarter.”

UKCG director Stephen Ratcliffe said: “The continued growth in construction reported by the latest survey is encouraging, and hopefully the clear general election result will help minimise any impact on work pipelines. Rising costs continue to reflect skills shortages, and the need to focus on recruiting and training new people into the industry.”

National Federation of Builders chief executive Richard Beresford added: “Companies are finding that prices agreed during leaner times have risen and are eroding profits, despite a rise in orders. With the industry entering a growth period, companies must take a longer-term view when setting prices to ensure their survival.”

Construction Products Association chief executive Dr Diana Montgomery said the surveys from the CPA, wider industry and independent sources indicated that the construction recovery appears set to continue through 2015. Despite rising costs and general election uncertainties, she said enquiries and orders were translating into activity on the ground and contributing to steady and consistent growth.

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