New developments underway in the UK dipped by 0.5% in February, with an estimated 0.2% in January revised downwards to 0.4%, data from the Office of National Statistics revealed.
Head of external affairs at FMB, Sarah McGonagle, said that the two months of consecutive decline “could well stem from uncertainty around the outcome of the EU referendum.”
“Construction is an industry that is particularly sensitive to fluctuations in confidence and the forthcoming referendum seems to be having a negative impact on business owners and consumers alike,” said McGonagle.
“Much in the same way as the Scottish independence vote weighed on industry confidence back in September 2014, hesitance over investment will likely prevail until we know the result on 23 June.”
While she said the decline isn’t “precipitous”, McGonagle said the results were disappointing, considering the prolonged downturn experienced in the housing sector following the financial crisis.
“We can only hope that this contraction is a blip rather than a prolonged decrease in construction output,” she added.