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  • According to Nationwide, UK house prices increased by 0.8% in July and were 3.9% higher than July 2012.  This translates to the typical UK home now being worth £170,825.  This is the strongest rate of annual price growth since August 2010.
  • Home building report shows sector investing more in skills and training as new build demand reaches highest level since 2008.  A new Home Building Skills report has found that 50% of all home builders and 80% of housing associations are taking on an apprentice in 2013, as latest figures show the sector capitalising on the ‘green shoots’ of growth across the industry. 
  • Construction output is set to grow by just over 2 per cent in 2014, according to the latest published forecasts by the Construction Products Association.  Output, according to the forecasts, is set to fall by 1.5 per cent this year, but 2014 marks a return to growth, with a 2.2 per cent uplift predicted for the year. Growth is then set to continue, at a rate of 4.5 per cent in 2015, when the industry will be worth more than £100bn for the first time since 2011, then 5 per cent in 2016 and 4.7 per cent in 2017.
  • British construction activity jumped sharply in July to hit its highest level in over three years, led by a surge in residential building, a survey of purchasing managers showed on 2nd August.  The Markit/CIPS construction PMI leapt to 57.0 last month, up from 51.0 in June and its strongest level since June 2010.

UK Economy

  • More spending by Britain's consumers suggests the economy will grow faster than previously thought this year and in 2014 according to The National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) who revised up its economic growth forecasts for both 2013 and 2014 by 0.3 percentage points to 1.2 percent this year and 1.8 percent next year.
  • The UK's services sector has expanded at its fastest pace since December 2006 - the Markit/CIPS Services Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) rose to 60.2 in July from 56.9 the month before, a stronger showing than economists had expected.  Any reading above 50 indicates growth.  The numbers complete a trio of positive PMI figures for July, after strong showings in both the construction and manufacturing sectors.

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