October was the third month in a row that confidence edged-up in the European construction sector. The overall climate improved, but respondents to the CE Barometer survey said activity was still little improved form a year ago.
As in September, there was a lot of optimism about prospects over the next 12 months. A positive balance of +42.3% of respondents said they expected activity levels to increase over the next 12 months – about the same result as September’s figure of +42.2%. The balance figure is the percentage of positive responses, minus the number of negative ones.
Reports of improving month-on-month activity were encouraging if not as forthright. A positive balance of +13.4% of respondents said they were busier in October than a month previously. This was a moderate improvement on the figure of +9.6% seen in September.
Despite these positive signs, other survey data suggest the industry is still fairly flat. Only +4.1% of respondents said they were busier now than a year ago. Although this was a positive result, it was far from encouraging, especially given that it was the third month in a row that this measure of confidence was only in low single-digit territory.
But the overall CE Climate – a composite measure of confidence – improved again in October, moving up to +19.9% from September’s figure of +18.1% and the +12.2% recorded in August.
The run of three months of positive results point to an industry recovery, but it still appears to be tentative, and built more on optimism for the coming year, rather than big, tangible improvements in current activity.
The survey, which takes just a one minute to complete, is open to all construction professionals working in Europe. The CE Barometer survey is open from the 1st to the 15th of each month on our website. Full information can be found at www.cebarometer.eu