The value of construction work taking place in Australia has hit a two-year high
Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics showed that work worth a seasonally-adjusted Au$8.6 billionn (£4.3 billion) was approved in December 2013.
This made it the most valuable month for the building industry since January 2012 – and before that, November 2009.
Non-residential work was the main factor, growing 11 per cent in the final month of last year to Au$3.6 billion.
Private sector commercial work grew by almost two-thirds in absolute terms to Au$1.3bn. Education and health work also grew.
Residential work was up 3 per cent to Au$5.0 billion – the first time it has reached that landmark figure.
Queensland saw the most growth in housing work in December, with the number of dwelling approvals in the state rising 3.8 per cent.
South Australia, Victoria and Western Australia also saw growth while the data was flat in New South Wales.
The Northern Territory, Tasmania and the Australian Capital Territory suffered declining residential approval numbers.
The seasonally-adjusted number of building approvals across Australia fell back slightly in December from November’s 20-year high.