Australian construction growth falls again as residential and commercial building battle to offset mining bust

Activity in the Australian construction sector has fallen for the third quarter in a row.

Both the residential and commercial construction sectors are struggling to replace construction work from the mining bust.

The value of construction in Australia fell 2.6 per cent for the March quarter and is the ninth fall in building activity in the last 10 quarters.

While engineering construction continued its rapid slowdown, residential construction was the only area to show growth, jumping 1.5 per cent in the March quarter.

A drop in housing approvals earlier this year has eased the residential construction growth, and ANZ economist Daniel Gradwell told the ABC that it’s nearing its peak.

“A record volume of work in the pipeline continues to underpin work done despite a general cooling in the housing market in recent months,” he said.

“While this backlog of work may support further growth in activity, we think housing construction is unlikely to be as significant a contributor to GDP in 2016 as it was in 2015.”


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