The economic climate shows a slight improvement in the building crafts sector, in October 2013Quarterly survey of the building crafts sector - October 2013

In October 2013, fewer craftsmen than in July indicate a decrease in their past activity and in their expected activity. The corresponding balance of opinion stays significantly below its long-term average.

The business outlook is improving

In October 2013, fewer craftsmen than in July indicate a decrease in their past activity and in their expected activity. The corresponding balance of opinion stays significantly below its long-term average.

The general business outlook, which expresses the craftsmen’s opinion on the overall change in the sector, improves sharply compare to the previous quarters, even if the corresponding balance of opinion remains below its long-term average.

Decreasing employment

According to the craftsmen, the workforce size declined last quarter: the corresponding balance of opinion stays below its long-term average. The employment shrinkage may ease in the next quarter.

Recruiting problems are almost stable

Recruiting problems concerned around one firm out of four. This proportion remains sharply inferior to its long-term average. The rate of businesses training apprentices has declined to reach 36 %.

Activity – Activity tendency in the building crafts sector

tableau1 – Building crafts sector economic outlook

Balances of opinion, in %, SA
Building crafts sector economic outlook
Mean* Jan. 13 April 13 July 13 Oct. 13
Past activity –4 –22 –27 –29 –25
Expected activity –8 –27 –30 –28 –23
General business outlook –20 –51 –52 –50 –34
Past employment –3 –8 –8 –11 –14
Expected employment –3 –15 –15 –14 –8
Recruiting problems (in %) 42 30 30 29 29
Apprentice training (in %) 38 41 40 39 36
  • * Mean since October 1990.