Contract Awards Rise by a Fifth in August 

THE TOTAL value of construction contract awards in August 2020 was £4.4 billion based on a three-month rolling average.

This is 21.2% higher than for July but is a decline of 8.5% compared with August 2019. 

Average data

The rolling three-month average data is positive, but examination of the raw monthly data shows that contract awards in August were 37.6% lower than for July with value of £3.9 billion. However, July was particularly buoyant and the raw monthly data for August perhaps reflects a return to more normal growth levels. However, August’s contracts value is still 146.9% higher than the recent low point of £1.6 billion for May 2020.

The latest edition of the Economic & Construction Market Review from industry analysts Barbour ABI, highlights levels of construction contract values awarded across Great Britain. 

Residential lead sector

Analysis by sector indicates that residential maintained lead sector status in August accounting for 37.6% of awards. 

Infrastructure was the second largest sector in August with attributable share of 30.5% of awards. Vying for third place the education and industrial sectors accounted for 9.4% and 9.0% respective share of contract awards this month.

Leading regions

The leading region in August was Yorkshire & Humberside which accounted for 23.0% of contract awards. The North West was the second largest region accruing 14.9% of awards and was followed by London which accounted for a 13.7% share of awards 

Tom Hall Chief Economist at Barbour ABI

Tom Hall, Chief Economist at Barbour ABI and AMA Research said, “The UK economy continued its stronger than expected recovery in July, growing by 6.6% following June’s expansion of 8.7%. 

“The economy has now recovered around half of the lost output between March and May. In the construction industry, contract awards returned strongly in July, but in-month awards were significantly lower in August.” 

Download the full report here.

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