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Ireland Construction Activity Growth Slows In May

Ireland's construction activity growth eased to the lowest in four months in May, survey data from IHS Markit showed on Monday.

The Ulster Bank Construction Purchasing Managers' Index, or PMI, fell to 54.9 in May from 56.6 in April. Any reading above 50 indicates expansion in the sector.

The housing sub-category rose at the fastest pace in three monitored sub-sectors for the fifth straight month in May. The corresponding PMI slid slightly to 58.3 from 60.5 a month ago.

Commercial activity increased at the slowest pace since August 2013. The commercial activity index came in 53.1 versus 54.6 in the previous month.

Civil engineering activity fell for the ninth month in a row. The civil engineering activity PMI dropped to 46.3 from 46.4 in April.

"New business and employment levels continued to rise at healthy rates in May, albeit in line with overall trends, both indices eased last month," Simon Barry, chief economist Republic of Ireland at Ulster Bank, said.

"Survey respondents remain optimistic about the sector's prospects over the year ahead, with expectations of stronger customer demand cited as an important source of support."

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