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  • Construction output declined further during the three months to July, falling by 0.3% compared to the previous three month period. Output over the period was 1.3% higher than a year earlier, weaker than the growth rate of the wider UK economy and the slowest for two years.
    • Repair and Maintenance work is down on both a year ago (-0.3%) and the previous three months as weak levels of Non-Housing R&M offset growth in private housing R&M work.
    • New work output was up 0.4% on the previous three months, and 3.7% higher than a year earlier.
    • New infrastructure work is the most positive area; up 3.2% on the previous three months and 17.9% on a year earlier.
    • Growth of private housing output has slowed with a 0.3% rise over the last three months, but output remains 6.6% higher than a year earlier.
    • Commercial work grew during the latest three months but remains lower than levels of a year earlier.


  • The UK unemployment rate was 5.5% during the three months to July, unchanged on the preceding three month period; this rate has been stable during 2015 having fallen sharply during the previous two years. The figures also indicate rising wage pressures, with average regular pay 2.9% higher than a year earlier during the same period, the fastest growth in over six years.
  • Wages have also been rising for construction workers according to the official statistics. Average regular weekly earnings during the three months to July were 3.1% higher than a year earlier, almost matching the 3.2% rate seen during the three months ending April this year. Including overtime and bonuses, construction workers’ average pay was 4% higher than a year earlier according to the latest figures.
  • A range of economic data points to a slowing in the rate of UK economic growth during the third quarter of 2015. Retail sales data and the Markit/CIPS Services PMI have both indicated a slowing in growth in recent months, while official data showed weak construction and manufacturing output during the month of July. The National Institute for Economic and Social Research estimate that during the three months to August growth was 0.5%, down from 0.6% in the three months to July and below the 0.7% rise in GDP recorded for the second quarter by the ONS.

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