June 2013 – Roads Special
We introduce a new feature this month. The Construction Index has teamed up with the corporate financial health monitoring specialist, Company Watch, which has an
in-depth method for analysing companies’ financial health and a good track record
of flagging up company failures before
Each month, Company Watch will cast its eye over a different sector of the construction industry. We start out with road builders. What is heartening is that despite the massive cuts in road building budgets in recent years, the contractors are, overall, proving remarkably resilient.
It will be interesting to see, in the months ahead, how other sectors are faring.
We have taken a less scientific and more anecdotal approach to our assessment of the piling fraternity, who are also featured in this issue. The news here is also good. Despite the difficulties of the past five years or so, piling contractors appear to be reasonably optimistic and are talking up their prospects. All good news then?
Well not quite. Construction activity remains at dangerously low levels – dangerous for the national economy as well for the industry itself. Any small percentage point growth is from an exceptionally low base. Despite some glamorous headline projects in the capital, a nationwide recovery with strength and breadth remains elusive. Don’t believe everything you hear about London construction benefiting the whole country. A widening gap is not healthy.