Construction output rebounded from December’s 17-month low in January, but job creation slowed to its lowest rate for 13 months.
According to Construction News, the Markit/CIPS Construction PMI stood at 59.1 for January, up from 57.6 in December.
It was the 21st consecutive month that the index has stayed above the neutral threshold of 50.
But January’s result was still the second-lowest the index has stood at since September 2013, and was lower than the monthly average for 2014 as a whole (61.8).
Residential output was the strongest sector in January, continuing the trend of consecutive expansion seen for the last two years.
Civil engineering activity rebounded following a decline in December, while commercial activity continued to grow.
New work saw a rebound in January, showing the fastest growth for three months, but it still remains below the average for 2014.
Job creation slowed for the second month running, reaching its lowest point since December 2013.
Looking forward into 2015, almost half of firms surveyed as part of the PMI expected an upturn in work over the next 12 months, while only 10 per cent expected a decline.
Despite this, business optimism fell to its second-lowest point since October 2013.
Commenting on the data, Tim Moore, senior economist at Markit, said: “UK construction companies have found their feet again after a protracted slowdown in output growth at the end of 2014.
“Stronger trends were recorded across housing, commercial and civil engineering, although each category of activity still experienced much slower growth than the high-watermarks achieved last year.
“In short, the peak speed of the construction recovery seems to be over, but reports of its death have been greatly exaggerated.”