Construction grows for third straight month

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Apartment building April’s positive PCI results were driven in large part by apartment construction Apartment building

The results of April’s Australian Performance of Construction Index (PCI) have shown Australia’s construction industry continued to expand in April and at a faster rate than previous months.

April’s index returned a result of 51.9, with readings above 50 indicating growth, which is a 0.7 point increase over March. The result signals industry-wide growth for the third consecutive month.

The monthly index is compiled by the Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) and the Housing Industry Association (HIA).

Across the four construction sub-sectors (free-standing houses, apartments, commercial and engineering) it was apartment building that recorded the largest resurgence with an 11.7-point increase over the previous month.

"April saw a modest lift and more balanced performance for the Australian construction sector," Ai Group head of policy Peter Burn says.

"In contrast to the previous month when house building was the only improving sub-sector, in April further – though less spectacular – growth in stand-alone residential dwellings was backed by a steep bounce in apartment building and a rebound in engineering construction," Burn says.

Commercial construction remained subdued over the month, recording a drop of 5.6 points to 43.2, which is its sharpest rate of contraction in six months. Engineering construction returned to expansion on the back of non-mining infrastructure work.

"Commercial construction again detracted from sector-wide performance with its steepest contraction in six months," Burn says.

"Both activity and new orders improved in the engineering construction sector in April as the declining impact of the wind-down in mining-related projects was outweighed by growth in transport infrastructure work."

 

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