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German Construction Growth At 7-month High

Germany's construction sector expanded at the fastest pace in seven months in December, led by strong growth in housing activity.

The German Construction Purchasing Managers' Index, or PMI, rose to 53.3 from November's 51.3, survey data from IHS Markit showed on Monday.

A PMI reading above suggests growth in the sector.

Activity and new orders grew at faster rates, thanks to milder-than-usual weather in some areas.

Housing activity rose at the fastest pace since last May. Civil engineering work decreased for the second month running, but to a smaller extent compared to November.

Constructors reported that strongest rise in order books for 11 months. Consequently, employment rose at the fastest pace in eight months.

Use of sub-contractors saw a renewed increase and purchasing activity rose at the fastest pace in four months.

Capacity pressures eased across the sector with the incidence of input delivery delays sinking to the lowest since last May.

However, cost pressures persisted with input prices inflation remaining among the strongest seen over the past seven years, despite easing slightly from November's 13-month high.

Sub-contractor rates grew at the fastest pace since last May.

The survey also showed that confidence among constructors rebounded further from October's three-year low, but remained modest than earlier in 2018.

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