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Contract awards plummet 24% in November

5 Dec 16 The value of new construction contracts signed in the UK fell by a quarter last month.

Data gathered by the Builders’ Conference shows that the total value of all new construction contracts awarded in November 2016 was £3.36bn, compared to £4.4bn in October, a fall of 24%.

A comparison with the previous year shows a similar decline. The total value of new construction contracts signed in November 2015 was £4.37bn.

November’s slowdown has impacted on the rolling year total for the BCLive league table, which at this time last year stood at a record-breaking £57bn. Today, it is down 23% to £43.8bn.

Topping the league for November was Graham Construction, with a total haul worth £192.5m. The largest of these was a £150m order for the construction and refurbishment of a number of civic buildings for the London Borough of Barnet.

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But it was tight at the top. Sir Robert McAlpine came in a close second with a combined £184m of orders, including a £100m order from Nikal for the construction of five blocks of flats at Birmingham’s Exchange Square.

Third place went to Galliford Try with £180.2m.

Builders Conference chief executive Neil Edwards said: “The industry now enters the Christmas season and a month shortened by festive holidays and slowed by the usual round of office parties.  So there is unlikely to be any last minute rally that will allow a gloomy year to end on anything other than a gloomy note.

“And sadly, that gloom looks set to stick around like the hangover and expanded waistline that is part and parcel of the Christmas festivities. In 2015, the BCLive league table identified – on average – 850 new tenders each month.   In 2016, that average has plummeted to 650.  Projecting forward, that threatens to throw up a very tough start to the New Year.”

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