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Statistical bulletin: Output in the Construction Industry, January 2014 and New Orders Q4 2013 This product is designated as National Statistics

Released: 14 March 2014 Download PDF

Key Points

  • This statistical bulletin provides users with the latest estimates of output in the construction industry for January 2014. Output is defined as the amount charged by construction companies to customers for value of work (produced during the reporting period) excluding VAT and payments to sub-contractors.
  • The seasonally adjusted estimate of construction output in January 2014 has risen by 1.8% (£170 million) when compared with December 2013. There was a slight rise of 0.8% (£50 million) in new work and a larger increase of 3.5% (£120 million) in repair and maintenance.
  • The longer term comparisons show an improved picture of construction output. All work in January 2014 has increased 5.4% (£490 million) when compared with January 2013. A similar story is apparent across the different types of work, where new work has increased by 5.9% (£330 million) and repair and maintenance by 4.5% (£160 million) over the same period.
  • The second estimate of GDP for Q4 2013 published on 28 February 2014 included an estimate of construction growth of 0.2%. This has been revised down in this release to a fall of 0.2% due to a refinement to the seasonal pattern in the monthly series.
  • New orders for construction in Q4 2013 is estimated to be 1.5% higher than Q3 due to a 5.2% (£200 million) increase in orders for new housing. All other work fell 0.4% over the same period caused by a 22.2% (£590 million) decrease in orders for infrastructure.

Introduction

Construction output estimates are a short term indicator of construction output by the private sector and public corporations within Great Britain and are produced from a monthly survey of 8,000 businesses in Great Britain. The estimates are produced and published at current prices (including inflationary price effects) and at chained volume estimates (with inflationary effects removed) both seasonally adjusted and non-seasonally adjusted.

New orders in the construction industry estimates are a short term indicator of construction contracts for new construction work awarded to main contractors by clients in both the public and private sectors within the UK. The estimates are produced and published both seasonally and non-seasonally adjusted at current prices (including inflationary price effects) and at constant prices (with inflationary effects removed). Since quarter 2 2013 these data have been supplied by Barbour ABI. Further details can be found in the background notes section of this bulletin.

Detailed estimates along with a longer run of time series data are available to download in the Output in the Construction Industry, January 2014 and New Orders Q4 2013 dataset.

Further details on the newly published monthly seasonally adjusted series and the chained volume measures can be found in the ‘What’s new’ section of the output background notes.

The ‘Definitions and explanations’ section in the background notes of this bulletin includes additional information on items contained in this release.

The persistent storms and rainfall during January have affected construction businesses. Qualitative evidence emerging from ONS's survey data collection suggests that effects have been localised. Some types of work may have decreased as new work could not be completed however, there may have been additional repair and maintenance required in these areas. ONS is keeping the effects of the weather in January and February 2014 under review in line with the ONS Special Events policy, and will make a decision on whether it is a Statistical Special Event shortly. 

It should be noted that due to seasonal adjustment taking place on a short span of data points used to interpret the seasonal effects (49 months), there is potential for increased revisions until the seasonal pattern is established within the time series. The seasonal pattern is generally established after 60 months in a monthly time series. 

Economic Context

Construction output is a component in the production approach to measuring gross domestic product (GDP), accounting for 6.3% of total GDP, based on 2010 weights. Due to the high value of construction in GDP and its stand alone status as a key economic indicator, the construction estimate is widely used by economists and industry specialists as an aid to economic interpretation and forecasting.

Monthly construction output increased by 1.8% in January, driven by both repair & maintenance and new work. Output growth was particularly strong in the repair & maintenance of private housing (9.6% month on month) and in the new work sectors of private commercial (2.4%) and private housing sectors (2.3%). However, while the volume of construction output continued to grow in January, the pace of that growth slowed by 0.2 percentage points compared with December 2013. This reflects lower output in the new private industrial (-4.5% month on month) and infrastructure sectors (-2.3%) in January, as well as slower growth in private new housing construction.

The annual rate of construction output growth continued to accelerate in January. Compared with the same month a year ago, output was 5.4% higher in January, up from 4.9% in the year to December 2013. Annual growth in the year to January was strongly supported by public and private new housing, which contributed 4.6 percentage points to output growth over this period. The repair & maintenance of private housing contributed a further 1.2 percentage points over this period, while output fell in the private industrial and infrastructure sectors.

The recent increase in construction output is consistent with a broad range of official and external indicators for the construction sector. The ONS house price Index (HPI) reported annual growth of 5.5% in the year to December 2013, while the Bank of England’s Inflation Report showed that housing market transactions had increased in every quarter of 2013. External indicators have also suggested increased housing construction activity, suggesting that rising prices and increasing activity are two factors contributing to the recent growth of housing construction. The Bank of England’s Agents’ Summary of Business Conditions has also noted signs that commercial construction activity started to pick up in early 2014.

More information on how construction output has fared during economic downturns can be found in the article ‘UK Construction Industry downturn in a historic context’.

Output in the Construction Industry – January 2014

Figure 1: All work, monthly time series chained volume measures, non-seasonally (NSA) and seasonally (SA) adjusted

Figure 1: All work, monthly time series chained volume measures, non-seasonally (NSA) and seasonally (SA) adjusted
Source: Construction: Output & Employment - Office for National Statistics

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Comparing January 2014 with December 2013 (Figure 1), the output of the construction industry increased by 1.8%, and by 5.4% when compared with January 2013. The three monthly data (November to January) show a rise of 3.5% when compared with the same three months a year ago but a fall of 1.0% when compared with the previous three months (August to October). The fall in the three months November to January was due to a fall of 4.1% in November.

Figure 2: All new work, monthly time series, chained volume measures, non-seasonally (NSA) and seasonally (SA) adjusted

Figure 2: All new work, monthly time series, chained volume measures, non-seasonally (NSA) and seasonally (SA) adjusted
Source: Construction: Output & Employment - Office for National Statistics

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All new work increased by a modest 0.8% (£50 million) in January when compared with December (Figure 2) mainly due to a 2.1% (£40 million) increase in new housing. The volume of new housing produced is now estimated to be at its highest level since the monthly series began in 2010.

Figure 3: Repair & Maintenance, monthly time series, chained volume measures, non-seasonally (NSA) and seasonally (SA) adjusted

Figure 3: Repair & Maintenance, monthly time series, chained volume measures, non-seasonally (NSA) and seasonally (SA) adjusted
Source: Construction: Output & Employment - Office for National Statistics

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Repair & maintenance increased 3.5% (£120 million) in January when compared with December (Figure 3). There were rises in all sub-sectors particularly in private new housing which increased 9.6% (£110million).

Table 1 shows the components of new work and their relative levels within the published time series.

Table 1: Component comparison to previous levels

  New Housing   Other New Work   All
  Public Private Total Infras- Excluding Infrastructure   New
        tructure Public Private Private   Work
            Industrial Commercial  
Current volume 433 1,601 2,034 1,078 791 245 1,788 5,936
Lowest volume* 320 1,071 1,392 987 769 241 1,564 5,441
Date Jan-13 Jan-10 Jan-10 Dec-10 Dec-12 Jul-11 Sep-12 Jun-12
Highest volume* 450 1,601 2,034 1,363 1,240 357 2,123 6,621
Date Mar-11 Jan-14 Jan-14 Dec-11 Feb-11 Aug-10 Sep-11 Jun-11
Percentage change from lowest volume 35.2 49.5 46.1 9.2 2.9 1.6 14.3 9.1
Percentage change from highest volume 3.9 0.0 0.0 -20.9 -36.2 -31.4 -15.8 -10.3

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. Monthly time series data for these components begins in January 2010

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Estimated to be £5,900 million, the output of new work remained 10.3% below its monthly peak of £6,600 million recorded in June 2011. However, new housing and private new housing are at their highest levels since the series began in 2010.

Table 2: Construction output summary tables, chained volume measures, seasonally adjusted

             
               
  Percentage change £million
  Most recent 3 months on a year earlier  Most recent 3 months on 3 months earlier  Most recent month on the same month a year ago Most recent month on the previous month Most recent level  
 
 
 
 
Construction    
 
Total All Work   3.5 -1.0 5.4 1.8 9,615  
Total All New Work   3.7 -0.7 5.9 0.8 5,936  
Total Repair & Maintenance   3.1 -1.4 4.5 3.5 3,679  
               
     
All New Work  
 
Total All New Work   3.7 -0.7 5.9 0.8 5,936  
New Housing              
  Public Corporations   24.7 7.5 35.2 1.4 433  
  Private Sector   18.0 4.1 23.4 2.3 1,601  
Other New Work              
Infrastructure   -2.9 -2.3 -3.2 -2.3 1,078  
Excl Infrastructure              
Public Corporations   -1.2 -3.1 2.2 0.3 791  
Private Sector               
Private Sector - Industrial   -20.1 -4.3 -20.5 -4.5 245  
Private Sector - Commercial   -0.3 -4.0 -0.2 2.4 1,788  
               
     
Repair & Maintenance  
 
Total Repair & Maintenance   3.1 -1.4 4.5 3.5 3,679  
Housing              
Public Corporations   -5.1 -0.9 -2.3 1.9 580  
Private Sector   6.6 -1.1 9.4 9.6 1,239  
Non-Housing   3.8 -1.7 3.8 0.2 1,859  
               

Table source: Office for National Statistics

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Construction estimates in gross domestic product

Construction estimates are a key component of the output approach to measuring GDP along with the estimates of services, production and agriculture. As an aid to users, the short term releases that directly feed into GDP now include an additional table of GDP components. It is anticipated that this table will inform users of the relationship between the individual components which comprise GDP output. The quarterly growths of the individual GDP components are shown in Figure 4. 

Each component of GDP has a weight within GDP based on its value in 2010. Construction has a weight of 63 which means that it is 63 parts of the 1,000 that make up total GDP.

Figure 4: Published contribution to Q4 2013 GDP

Figure 4: Published contribution to Q4 2013 GDP
Source: Construction: Output & Employment - Office for National Statistics

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To determine the effect each component has on GDP multiply the component growth by its weight in GDP.

An example using Q2 2013 data:

Construction growth    = 1.9

Weight in GDP            = 0.063 (63/1000)

Effect on GDP                        = 1.9 * 0.063 = 0.1197 or 0.1 to 1 decimal place (dp).

Revisions to components and the effect on GDP can be calculated using the same process. As a general rule there are no revisions to GDP when the component revisions are:

IoP = between 0.3 and -0.3

Construction = between 0.7 and -0.7

IoS = 0.0 (all values above or below 0.0 effect GDP due to the high weight of IoS in GDP).

Because;

IoP =                           0.152*0.4 =     0.0608 or 0.1 to 1 dp  

Construction =            0.063*0.8 =     0.0504 or 0.1 to 1 dp

IoS =                           0.778*0.1 =     0.0778 or 0.1 to 1 dp

Table 3 shows the latest monthly and revised quarterly output figures that fed into the second estimate of GDP release for Q4 2013 published on the 28 February 2014.

Table 3: GDP component tables, chained volume measure, seasonally adjusted

       
                                                  Percentage  Change
Publication Weight in GDP Publication date Latest periods Most recent period on a year earlier  Most recent period on the previous period 
GDP 1000 28-Feb Q4 2013  2.7  0.7
Index of Production 152        
11-Mar Jan-14  2.9  0.1
07-Feb Q4 2013  2.2†  0.5†
       
Construction output 63        
14-Mar Jan-14  5.4  1.8
14-Feb Q4 2013  3.4† -0.2†
       
Index of Services 778 28-Jan Q4 2013  2.6  0.8
Agriculture 7 28-Jan Q4 2013 -6.5  0.5
           
     

Table source: Office for National Statistics

Table notes:

  1. revised since previous publication

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The second estimate of GDP published on 26 Feb 2014 contained an estimate for quarterly construction growth of 0.2%. This release has revised that growth estimate to minus 0.2%. This has changed the contribution that construction has made to Q4 2013 GDP from 0.01% to minus 0.01% but has not changed GDP growth at 1 decimal place.

Figure 5: GDP components, chained volume measures, seasonally adjusted (SA)

Figure 5: GDP components, chained volume measures, seasonally adjusted (SA)
Source: Construction: Output & Employment - Office for National Statistics

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Figure 5 shows the quarterly path for GDP and its components from Q1 2005. While it is apparent that all the components were severely affected by the economic downturn from 2008 it is clear that the downturn had a more pronounced effect on both production and construction. Production and construction have in fact gone through a second contraction. The production fall began in Q4 2010 and output fell to levels lower than those seen through the downturn, while construction fell slightly later, beginning its decline in Q2 2011 and reaching the low point of this second downturn in Q3 of 2012. Since this low point, construction output has continued to improve slowly and had increased 5% by Q4 2013, with a rate of improvement in 2013 sharper than that recorded for either the production or service sectors.

 

New Orders for Construction – Q4 2013

Figure 6: New Orders, Constant (2005) index prices, seasonally adjusted

Figure 6: New Orders, Constant (2005) index prices, seasonally adjusted
Source: Barbour ABI

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It is estimated that the seasonally adjusted volume of all new orders increased 1.5% between Q3 and Q4 2013 to £12.6 billion. The increase in new orders is solely attributable to a 5.2% increase in orders for new housing. All other work, which is twice the size of new housing, fell by 0.4% during the same period.

The growth in orders for new housing is due to an increase of 7.2% in orders for private new housing, which has returned to growth after a 2.7% fall in Q3. Public new housing orders showed zero growth between Q3 and Q4.

Infrastructure orders fell back 22.2% in Q4 after the high volumes recorded in Q3 and despite a large increase in orders for private industrial new work, coupled with smaller increases in orders for public and private commercial other work, this contributed to other work falling 0.4% between Q3 and Q4.

When comparing Q4 2013 with Q4 2012 five out of the six sub-sectors showed growth. During this period, all new housing orders increased by 31.9% (£1.0 billion) due to a 53.2% (£380 million) increase in orders for public housing and an increase of 25.9% (£660million) in private housing. All other work showed mixed results. There was an overall decrease in orders for other new work of 6.2% (£550 million) due to a fall in infrastructure orders of 39.7% (£1.4 billion). This was offset by rises in all other components of other work, particularly orders for private-industrial new work, which increased 115.3% (£570 million) when compared with Q4 2012. The sharp decline in infrastructure orders between Q4 2013 and Q4 2012, while appearing substantial, is due to the exceptionally large volume recorded in Q4 2012 which remains the second largest volume of infrastructure new orders on record.


Table 4: Volume of New Orders summary tables, Quarterly constant (2005) prices, seasonally adjusted

     
Most recent quarter on a year earlier  Most recent quarter on the previous quarter  Most recent level
       
1. All New Work Percentage change £million
       
       
All New Work   4.0   1.5 12,590
All New Housing   31.9   5.2 4,299
All Other Work  -6.2  -0.4 8,291
       
       
1.1  New Housing Percentage change £million
       
       
All New Housing   31.9   5.2 4,299
Public   53.2   0.0 1,100
Private   25.9   7.2 3,199
       
       
1.2  Other New Work Percentage change £million
       
       
All Other Work  -6.2  -0.4 8,291
Infrastructure  -39.7  -22.2 2,056
Excl Infrastructure      
Public   6.0   16.8 2,090
Private - Industrial   115.3   25.6 1,068
Private - Commercial   3.7   1.2 3,077
     

Table source: Barbour ABI

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Background notes

  1. What’s new?
    ONS previously announced the intention of transferring production of the construction estimates to a new CORD system from March 2014. ONS are reviewing this implementation date and will update users in due course.

    From Jan 2014, after a review of the current sample, there will be an update with the introduction of two new employment sizebands to cover those businesses with 5-9  and 10-19 employment, which were previously covered together in the 5-19 sizeband.   The overall sample size will remain the same.

    Users are reminded, in line with previous announcements, that this publication contains the final data point in the constant price (2005) series.

    Construction statistics would like to express their gratitude to the ONS Undergraduate Working Group on Economic Statistics for their user analysis and recommendations on potential improvements to this bulletin. Many of their recommendations have been implemented in this release and a number of their additional recommendations are currently being developed for future integration.

  2. About this release
    Construction output estimates are a short term indicator of construction output by private sector and public corporations within Great Britain. Output estimates are produced and published at current prices (including inflationary price effects) and at chained volume estimates (with inflationary effects removed) both seasonally adjusted and non-seasonally adjusted. Chained volume measures are also described as volume. Construction output is used in the compilation of the output approach to measuring gross domestic product (GDP).

    The data published in this release cover construction estimates for Great Britain. Construction output estimates for Northern Ireland can be obtained from the Central Survey Unit.

    New Orders in the Construction Industry estimates have been compiled using data supplied by Barbour ABI. These data have also been used in the compilation of tables 5 and 6 in the Output of the Construction Industry data tables. Full details of this change in data source can be found in the article, 'Announcement of Changes to New Orders in the Construction Industry'.

  3. Revision policy
    This release conforms to the standard National Accounts revision policy (27.8 Kb Pdf) , which can be found on the National Statistics website. In line with this, the construction output release for Quarter 4 2013 has a revision period back to January 2013.

    Figures for the most recent months are provisional and subject to revision in light of (a) late responses to the Monthly Business Survey MBS and (b) revisions to seasonal adjustment factors which are re-estimated every period.

  4. Statistical continuous improvement
    In December 2012, as part of its Statistical Continuous Improvement programme, ONS published a Review of Sample Design and Estimation Methodology for Construction Output. This report evaluated the sample design and estimation methods used on the Construction Output Survey. The conclusions of the review were that the current sample is performing well and that the current methodology for estimation within the survey produces the smallest standard error.

    In response to user feedback and in line with the announcement made in the article ‘Improvements to the methods used to compile Output in the Construction Industry statistics’, this statistical bulletin now contains monthly seasonally adjusted chained volume estimates. Due to the potential for confusion when comparing constant price (volume) and chained volume measures, all references to constant price series for construction output have been removed from this, and future bulletins.

  5. Use of the data
    Output in the Construction Industry estimates are widely used both internally and externally and have been identified by legal requirement and user engagement surveys.

    The key users of data from the Output of the Construction Industry dataset are:
    • United Kingdom National Accounts

    • Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union, in order to comply with statutory legislation on short-term business statistics (STS). Short-term business statistics provide information on the economic development of four major domains: industry, construction, retail trade and other services.

    • Industry analysts requiring estimates of the construction industry output of Great Britain.

    • Trade associations making UK and international comparisons and to forecast trends in the construction industry.

    • Other government departments including; the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), HM Treasury (HMT), Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) and the Office for Budgetary Responsibility (OBR).

    As well as being a key indicator of the performance of construction companies, the results of the survey also contribute to the estimate of the gross domestic product of the UK, contributing approximately 6.3% of GDP.

  6. Methods
    The ONS Monthly Construction Output Survey measures output from the construction industry in Great Britain. It samples 8,000 businesses, with all businesses employing over 100 people or with an annual turnover of more than £60m receiving a questionnaire by post every month. The results of the survey are deflated using price indices from the Building Cost Information Service (BCIS) of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and then seasonally adjusted using X-12 Arima to derive the published estimates.

    Since the 1950s New Orders in Construction data had been collected from a sample survey of businesses; originally monthly and then quarterly.  There were some known quality issues with the survey data as (a) the coverage of the survey was unknown; and (b) new orders allocated to regions were not always accurately recorded.  The New Orders data are now supplied under contract to the ONS by Barbour ABI. Barbour ABI provide ONS with improved coverage and regional splits of new orders in construction data.

  7. Quality
    The latest Quality and Methodology report (161.5 Kb Pdf) for the Output of the Construction Industry estimates can be found on the ONS website.

    A Quality and Methodology Information Report for New Orders in the Construction Industry (100.2 Kb Pdf) is also available. This updated report details the current methodology incorporating Barbour ABI data.

  8. Revisions
    One indication of the reliability of the key indicators can be obtained by monitoring the size of revisions. Analysis of the previously published quarterly seasonally adjusted constant price series has shown that revisions to construction data are small. Generally these quarterly revisions are less than 1% when compared with the final revised period five quarters after initial publication. This indicates that the published estimates are a reliable snapshot of the output in the industry at the date of publication.

    The size and pattern of revisions which have occurred in the chained volume measures in the open period for revisions can be found in the new revision triangles on the construction web page. Please note that these indicators only report summary measures for revisions. The revised data may be subject to sampling or other sources of error. Details about this revisions material can be found in the document ‘Revisions information in ONS First Release’.

    It should be noted that due to seasonal adjustment taking place on a short span of data points used to interpret the seasonal effects (49 months), there is potential for increased revisions until the seasonal pattern is established within the time series. The seasonal pattern is generally established after 60 months in a monthly time series.

    Please note that a monthly seasonally adjusted chained volume series is not available pre-2010. This is due to monthly data not being available for this period. These data are a requirement for creating previous year’s prices from which chain linked volume measures are created.

    Revisions to the price indices used to compile the constant price series has caused data changes back to Q4 2012 in the new orders series (table 5).  Due to these price changes in the non-seasonally adjusted series, a refinement to the seasonal pattern has also caused revisions to the seasonally adjusted series.

    Table 5: Growth revisions to previously published KP new orders data

     
    Revision to published growth
    2012 Q2 0.40%
    2012 Q3 -0.90%
    2012 Q4 0.90%
    2013 Q1 -2.80%
    2013 Q2 0.90%
    2013 Q3 -0.90%

    Table source: Barbour ABI

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  9. Relevant links
    International Comparisons
    International construction comparisons are compiled by Eurostat. The estimates produced in this bulletin are included in these comparisons. Further information can be found on the Eurostat web page.

  10. Further information
    Releases on construction output and employment prior to the transfer to ONS can be found on the BIS website.

  11. User Engagement
    The user engagement section of the ONS website contains results of the survey held in April 2011 regarding users' satisfaction and use of the new orders and construction output surveys.

  12. GENERAL INFORMATION

    Understanding the data

    Interpreting the data
    When making comparisons it is recommended that users focus on chained volume measures or constant price (volume), seasonally adjusted estimates as these show underlying movements rather than seasonal movements.

    Construction output estimates are subject to revision because of:

    • Late responses to the Construction Output Survey.

    • Revisions to seasonally adjusted factors which are re-estimated every quarter.

    • Annual updating of the Inter-Departmental Business Register (IDBR) that forms the basis of the sampling for the Construction Output Survey. This occurs in January and can have an effect on the results published in May.

    Definitions and explanations
    Definitions of terminology found within the main statistical bulletin are detailed below:

    Output
    Output is defined as the amount chargeable to customers for building and civil engineering work done in the relevant period excluding VAT. As well as work charged to customers, businesses are asked to include the value of work done on their own initiative on buildings such as dwellings or offices for eventual sale or lease, and of work done by their own operatives on the construction and maintenance of their own premises. The value of goods made by businesses themselves and used in the work is also included.

    In all returns, work done by sub-contractors is excluded to avoid double counting, since sub-contractors are also sampled. Output does not include payments made to architects or consultants from other firms – this would also cover engineers and surveyors. It would include wages paid to such people if they were directly employed by the business.

    Current price (value) (CP)
    Current prices are the actual or estimated recorded monetary value over a defined period. They show the value for each item expressed in terms of the prices of that period.

    Constant price (volume) (KP)
    A constant price or volume measure is a series of economic data from successive years expressed in real terms by computing the production volume for each year in the prices of a reference year. The resultant time-series of production figures has the effects of price changes removed (that is, monetary inflation or deflation). In other words, from the raw data a series is obtained which reflects only production volume. See the ‘Deflation’ section. Constant price series in this bulletin are based on the reference year 2005.

    Chained volume measures (CVM)
    A chained volume series is a series of data from successive years, put in constant price terms by computing the production volume for each year in the prices of the preceding year, and then chain-linking the data together to obtain a time-series of production figures from which the effects of price changes (i.e., monetary inflation or deflation) have been removed. Further information on chain-linking can be found in the methodological article ‘Annual chain-linking’ (58 Kb Pdf) .

    Seasonal adjustment (SA)
    Seasonal adjustment aids interpretation by removing effects associated with the time of the year or the arrangement of the calendar, which could obscure movements of interest.

    Deflation
    It is common for the value of a group of financial transactions to be measured in several time periods. The values measured will include both the change in the volume sold and the effect of the change of prices over that year. Deflation is the process whereby the effect of price change is removed from a set of values. The current reference year is 2010 for CVM data.

    Sectors
    Institutional sectors are defined in the System of National Accounts (SNA) glossary as;
    Units that are grouped together to form institutional sectors on the basis of their principal functions, behaviour, and objectives.

    The resident institutional units that make up the total economy are grouped into five mutually exclusive sectors:

    • Non-financial corporations.

    • Financial corporations.

    • General government.

    • Non-profit institutions serving households.

    • Households.

    In the case of non-financial and financial sectors these can be further broken down into public sector, those units either controlled by the state or funded from the public purse and include general government, local authorities, housing associations and nationalised industries and private sector, those units controlled by private individuals or groups and not by the public sector.

    Gross domestic product (GDP)
    Gross domestic product (GDP) is an integral part of the UK national accounts and provides a measure of the total economic activity in a region.

    GDP is often referred to as one of the main 'summary indicators' of economic activity and references to 'growth in the economy' are quoting the growth in GDP during the latest quarter.

    Construction estimates are a component of GDP from the output or production approach (GDP(O)) which measures the sum of the value added created through the production of goods and services within the economy (our production or output as an economy). This approach provides the first estimate of GDP and can be used to show how much different industries (for example, agriculture) contribute within the economy.

    Housing
    Housing is generally defined as ‘all buildings that are constructed for residential use’. Within the public sector this classification includes construction items such as local authority housing schemes, hostels (except youth hostels), married quarters for the services and police; old peoples' homes; orphanages and children’s remand homes; and the provision within housing sites of roads and services for gases, water, electricity, sewage and drainage.

    Private sector housing includes all privately owned buildings for residential use, such as houses, flats and maisonettes, bungalows, cottages, vicarages, and the provision of services to new developments.

    Infrastructure
    Infrastructure is the generic term for the basic physical and organisational structures and facilities needed for the operation of a society or enterprise. These construction items include buildings, roads, power supplies, etc.

    Other new work
    Other new work excludes the housing and infrastructure sectors. This classification includes construction items such as factories, warehouses, schools and offices, etc.

    Non-housing
    Within the public sector, non-housing is classified as the construction of building such as schools and colleges, hospitals, universities, fire stations, prisons and museums. Private sector non-housing is comprised of the private /industrial and private/commercial classifications. Private - industrial is the economic activity concerned with the processing of raw materials and manufacture of goods in factories and includes construction items such as factories and shipyards while private – commercial includes all items not included in the previous categories such as embassies, theatres, retail units, warehouses and garages, etc.

    Repair and maintenance
    The repair and maintenance heading in the construction estimates comprises of housing, infrastructure and other new work. This concerns work which is either repairing something that is broken, or maintaining it to an existing standard.  For housing output this includes repairs, maintenance, improvements, house/flat conversions, extensions, alterations and redecoration, etc. on existing housing. For non-housing this includes repairs, maintenance, redecoration, etc. on existing buildings/structures, which are not housing, for examples schools, offices, roads, shops.

    Table 2 of this bulletin aggregates infrastructure and other new work into non-housing.

  13. Code of Practice for Official Statistics
    National Statistics are produced to high professional standards which are set out in the Code of Practice for Official Statistics. They undergo regular quality assurance reviews to ensure that they meet customer needs and are produced free from any political interference. 

  14. Publication policy
    Details of the policy governing the release of new data are available from the Media Relations Office. 

  15. Accessing data
    The Output in the Construction Industry statistical bulletin and relevant time series datasets are available to download free from the Office for National Statistics website at 9.30 am on the day of publication.

    ONS allows a list of agreed officials to have access to data 24 hours before publication, which is available on the Construction release page.

  16. Further information and user feedback
    As a user of our statistics, we would welcome feedback on this release, in particular on the content, format and structure. For further information about this release, or to send feedback on our publications, please contact us using the following information.

    Contacts:

    Media contact:
    Tel Media Relations Office    +44 (0)845 6041858
    Emergency on-call    +44 (0)7867 906553
    Email  press.office@ons.gsi.gov.uk

    Contact us:
    Tel  +44 (0)845 601 3034
    Email  info@ons.gov.uk
    Website  ONS Website 
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  17. Details of the policy governing the release of new data are available by visiting www.statisticsauthority.gov.uk/assessment/code-of-practice/index.html or from the Media Relations Office email: media.relations@ons.gsi.gov.uk

Statistical contacts

Name Phone Department Email
Stuart Deneen +44 (0)1633 456344 Office for National Statistics construction.statistics@ons.gsi.gov.uk
Get all the tables for this publication in the data section of this publication .
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