The latest CPA survey of the supply chain showed that the construction industry remained in expansion mode during the second quarter of 2021.

Construction product manufacturers reported the fourth consecutive quarterly rise in product sales, whilst SME building contractors and chartered surveyors saw workloads rise yet again in Q2. While growth in workloads remained broad-based across sectors, it was largely led by private housing and RM&I, where activity has been sustained by government housing policies and increased demand for larger properties with outdoor and office/study space in rural areas due to the homeworking trend. Infrastructure also remained a key driver due to works occurring on a number of large-scale projects and long-term regulatory frameworks, with civil engineering contractors reporting the third consecutive annual rise in workloads in Q2.

Forward-looking indicators point to further growth over the coming year, with the net balances for product sales and workload expectations, enquiries and orders all hitting multi-year highs in Q2. Despite this, the supply of materials and products remained the biggest issue for chartered surveyors and civil engineers and were viewed as the main risk to product manufacturers’ 12-month sales outlook due to ongoing global supply chain issues. Concerns with the recruitment of skilled labour were also echoed across the supply chain, most notably for carpenters and bricklayers relating to house building, as well as general on-site trades. Raw material costs also emerged as another potential constraint, but the proportion of civil engineers raising tender prices for both new work and R&M hit an all-time high, whilst chartered surveyors expect rising profit margins in the year ahead.

FIS members can access the full results of the Construction Trade Survey here.

Market Data

FIS has access to a wide range of market data from sources including the CPA, Barbour ABI and Builders’ Conference. In addition, FIIS produces a state of trade survey specifically for the finishes and interiors sector.