Calls grow for Bank to print more money as builders get shakier
Tuesday 05 March 2013
An alarming plunge for Britain's builders in February intensified calls for the Bank of England to offer more help to the economy yesterday.
The Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply's latest snapshot of the sector – where a score under 50 signals falling activity – sank from 48.7 to 46.8 last month, marking the fastest pace of decline since October 2009.
After a dire showing from manufacturers, more weak signs from Britain's services firms – by far the largest chunk of the economy – today could prompt the Bank's rate-setters to trigger more money-printing this week. It also prompted industry calls for the Chancellor to use the looming Budget to kick-start the building industry.
David Noble, Cips' chief executive, said: "There is barely a crumb of comfort in this month's figures for the construction industry to ease the continued decline in performance. Overall, these figures are disappointing, to say the least, and with little in sight to improve the sector's fortunes, all eyes will be on the Chancellor to do something to prevent further decline in the sector."
The survey revealed that falling commercial building work and a decline in civil engineering more than offset a modest rise in housebuilding. New orders have fallen every month since last June. The activity index has been stuck in negative territory since October, despite figures showing a 0.9 per cent rise for the construction sector in the final quarter of last year.
Alasdair Reisner, the director of external affairs at the Civil Engineering Contractors Association, warned: "The construction sector is fundamental to the Government's recovery strategy, and yet it is currently languishing in an anaemic condition, showing only weak or negative growth.
"If the Chancellor is to achieve his goal of kick-starting growth through infrastructure provision, it is vital that he takes the necessary steps to increase workloads and unblock smaller local infrastructure projects without delay."
- 1 Autistic adults could take pure MDMA to 'reduce social anxiety'
- 2 Natalie Portman tells Harvard graduates: 'Accept your lack of knowledge'
- 3 Before you complain about your GP, this is what you need to know about actually doing the job
- 4 Father of 12 accused of raping, beating, starving and abusing his own children in US 'cult'
- 5 Charlie Charlie Challenge explained: not a Mexican demon being summoned — it's gravity
People are criticising Fifa World Cup sponsors with corrupt corporate logos
Natalie Portman tells Harvard graduates: 'Accept your lack of knowledge'
University league tables: Best universities for teaching standards rank Oxford, Cambridge and Coventry among top 20
Fifa corruption live: Uefa to consider pulling teams from Fifa tournaments if Blatter stays
Skull found in Spain could be the world's first-ever murder victim
EU referendum: David Cameron's rules are a 'democratic disgrace', says French-born Scottish politician set to be denied a vote
The day that Britain resigned as a global power
SNP fury as HS2 finds 'no business case' for taking fast train service to Scotland
Australian man punched in the face for defending Muslim women from abuse on train
A nation of inequality: How the UK is failing to feed its most vulnerable people
EU referendum: David Cameron to deny EU migrants and under-18s the chance to vote
iJobs Money & Business
£30 - 35k: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Pricing Analyst to join a leading e-...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £45K YR1: SThree: At SThree, we like to be dif...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + competitive: SThree: Did you know? SThree is a mul...
£55 - 65k (DOE): Guru Careers: A unique opportunity for a permanent C# Develop...