- Output in the U.K. construction sector eased in February, according to data released on Tuesday, as heavy rain and flooding in parts of the country affected house building.

The Markit U.K. construction purchasing managers'' index fell to 62.6 in February from a reading of 64.6 in January, the highest level since August 2007. Analysts had expected the index to fall to 63.0 last month.

The report said adverse weather had contributed to softer construction output in February, especially in house building. Residential construction activity rose at the slowest pace in four months.

“Bad weather took a bite out of progress in house building, but U.K. construction remains on a strong growth trajectory in February,” senior economist at Markit David Noble said.

“Even though both housing and commercial activity suffered a slide in pace of growth in February, the overall performance was one of continued expansion.”

Civil engineering activity was the best performing area of construction in February, driven by increased spending among local authorities on capital projects and maintenance, in response to recent flooding.

Job creation in the sector hit a three-month high and firms remained highly positive about their expectations for business activity over the year ahead, survey complier Markit said.

The data came one day after a report showed that U.K. manufacturing grew at a faster-than-expected rate in February, with employment in the sector expanding at its fastest pace in almost three years.

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