Latest data released by Markit/CIPS - 4 February 2020

Construction output is still seen falling, but at its slowest pace since May last year as business optimism rebounds amid receding political uncertainty after the UK election.

Markit notes that:

"The construction sector downturn lost intensity in January amid slower reductions in house building, commercial work and civil engineering activity. Measured overall, the latest dip in construction output was much shallower than in December, with survey respondents often commenting on improved willingness to spend among clients since the general election.Despite concerns about prospects for work on infrastructure projects, latest data revealed a strong rebound in business optimism across the construction sector as a whole in January. The degree of positivity reached its highest level since April 2018, driven by hopes that improving confidence among clients will continue to translate into new contract awards over the course of 2020."

We'll have to see if the situation will eventually lead to more construction activity but for now, hope springs eternal and this pairs with the better January PMI data overall as well.