By Maximilian Clarke

Surprise gains in the UK’s construction sector in recent months appear to be showing signs of reversing, with the Office for National Statistics today confirming a 0.2% drop in construction activity over Q3 2011.

Compared to the same quarter 2010, this figure rises to 1%, at a 1.8% drop in new work overshadowed slight gains in repair and maintenance.

Construction in the UK forms a vital core of the UK economy, serving as a broader barometer for economic health. Employing an estimated 2 million workers from more than 300,000 businesses and sole traders, the 1% annual drop in activity will likely exacerbate other ailing economic indicators.

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