Latest data released by Markit - 6 May 2021

The downturn in construction activity continues in April but the thing to note from the report is unprecedented levels of supply disruption, which has caused input price inflation to climb to its highest since survey records began in 1999.

Looking at the details, commercial activity continues to be the worst-performing area while residential projects continued to move closer towards stabilisation.

Markit notes that:

"April's construction PMI survey produced another set of disappointing figures, showing the building sector still stuck in a slump amid a continued soft patch in order books.

"However, it's on the supply side where we see the greatest causes for concern, with shortages of building materials leading to unprecedented reports of longer wait-times for inputs and pushing up purchase prices at rate previously unseen in over two decades of data collection.

"Supply bottlenecks are starting to unnerve constructors, leading to a decline in business sentiment about the outlook over fears of forced downtime on-site in the coming months and a threat to demand from sharply rising prices."