UK construction steady as firms play catch-up
Output in the UK construction industry held steady in May, as firms continued to play catch-up from a period of severe weather in the first quarter.
The Markit/CIPS UK Construction purchasing managers' index (PMI) remained at 52.5 last month, beating estimates which predicted a reading of 52.
A reading above 50 indicates growth. Following the announcement, sterling nudged up 0.12% against the US dollar at 1.336.
Commercial activity improved, but there was slower growth in both residential and civil engineering projects.
Housebuilding remained the strongest sub-sector in the industry, with a PMI of 55.7, as compared to 52.2 and 50.6 for the commercial and civil engineering sectors respectively.
Samuel Tombs, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, said: "The long investment time horizons for both commercial and civil engineering projects mean that both sectors likely will remain depressed until some clarity emerges over the UK's long-term relationship with the EU."
Some companies said the unusually good weather helped them to rebound from the Beast from the East.