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Construction industry shows August expansion

Crane and construction site

After declining or remaining stable for 9 months, Australia’s construction industry expanded during the month of August. The Australian Performance of Construction Index (Australian PCI) increased by 6.7 points to 53.8. Readings above 50 indicate an expansion in activity.

The expansion has been driven by improvements in the new orders and activity sub-indexes, as well as a growth in employment.

While apartment building was the strongest performer in the construction sector at 58.7 points, house building and commercial construction also expanded solidly.

Ai Group Head of Policy, Peter Burn, said, “continued strength in the residential sub-sectors and a lift in conditions in commercial construction underwrote the welcome return to expansion in the national construction sector during August. The positive news from these sub-sectors was sufficiently strong to outweigh the entrenched contraction in engineering construction associated with the winding-down in mining-related projects.”

Housing Industry Association Chief Economist, Harley Dale, said, “there is a breadth to the healthier outcomes evident for the August Australian PCI that can be viewed with cautious optimism. The results for both the detached house and apartment sub-sectors reinforce the important contribution that new home construction continues to make to Australia’s economic growth.”