Wednesday, 1 February 2012

The construction industry forecast at a glance

If like me a juicy stat gets you all wide eyed and interested, then you’ll understand how I felt yesterday when the latest construction industry forecast landed on my desk.

Whilst I’m a stickler for good bit of technical detail, I do believe that sometimes it’s just not necessary and this is definitely one of those occasions. I could probably rewrite the entire forecast into a quarter of its current pages and you’d still walk away well informed and a bit depressed at the state of the economy, so hell, let’s go one step further and list it in bullet points!
Here are the bits that I found most interesting. Be warned, it doesn’t make for pleasant

· Six months ago the UK economy was forecast to increase by 2.5%, but this was revised down to just 0.7% in time for us to see in the New Year – apparently that’s still optimistic

· Unemployment is set to rise by another 2.8million this year which is pretty scary considering household disposable income has fallen for five consecutive quarters already

· The construction industry is set to fall by 5.2% this year and will remain flat throughout 2013. It’s not all bad news though, it’s forecast to grow by 3.8% in 2014 followed by 4.6% in 2015. This will most likely be the start of a healthy year on year increase because 2015 is the year in which 85% of the £4.7 billion pound construction industry ‘boost’ promised by the Coalition Government will become available

· Commercial construction has been propped up by the Olympic development in central London but we’ll see a 5% fall when that ends this year. This sector will also be hit by the administration of Battersea Power Station which will wipe out the planned £4.5 billion regeneration

· Construction in the education sector is likely to fall by 35% before 2014 despite a £1.2 billion investment this year. Half of which will be spent on building 100 free schools

· The construction of healthcare facilities will fall by 40% before 2014

· Private housing construction will increase by 2% in 2012 and a boost of 29% is forecast for between 2013 – 2015

· Rail construction is expected to rise by a whopping 90% between now and 2015 and construction within the energy generation sector will increase threefold

Once my cuppa had gone cold and I’d defaced my copy of the forecast to within an inch of its
life with notes and highlighters, I sat and thought for a moment.
I certainly didn’t feel the suffocation of impending doom like I did a few years ago, but don’t get me wrong, we’re not out of the woods just yet. It looks like we’ve got another two years to get through before things really start to pick up economically.
What’s the answer? Kettle on, heads down and move forward. We’ll get there.


Post a Comment