Housebuilding led the rebound, according a survey from consultancy firm Markit, as companies that had put-off projects until knowing the outcome of May's voting started to spend again. Optimism across the sector picked up almost immediately, with the feel good factor reaching its highest level since February 2006 - over nine years ago!
The Markit/CIPS construction purchasing managers’ index (PMI) stood at 55.9 in May, up from 54.2 in April. This was well above the 50 threshold that signals growth. It was also higher than economists had been expecting.
The survey showed a return to growth in civil engineering work, while commercial building work expanded at its slowest pace in almost two years.
“May’s survey provides the first sign of a post-election bounce in the UK construction sector," said Tim Moore, an economist at Markit. “Construction firms experienced an upturn in new business growth from April’s near two-year low and job creation was the fastest recorded so far in 2015."
However, Mr Moore said it was "far from certain whether the relief rally in construction" would translate into "a lasting turnaround in output volumes on the ground".
“Despite a client spending rebound in May, all three key areas of construction activity have lost considerable momentum over the past 12 months. The scale of the construction slowdown since 2014 is such that it will not be fully reversed through the release of pent up demand after the election alone."