The Office of Fair Trading has been accused of generating 'misinformation' and 'innuendo' in its announcement last week of an investigation into alleged price-rigging among the UK’s largest building groups. Daily Telegraph

The Construction Confederation has asked the OFT to make a swift clarification. Its complaint centres on the press release in which the watchdog announced its inquiry, which the confederation says led to “sensationalised” reports.

The call comes two months after the competition body was criticised by a High Court judge for trying to attract sensationalist publicity over a separate investigation into milk pricing.

Confederation chief executive Stephen Ratcliffe said: 'It is important that the consequences of this investigation are clearly understood and that the waters are not muddied by misinformation and innuendo.'

Last week the OFT implicated 112 companies – including Balfour Beatty and Carillion – in alleged practices which it claims have seen local councils overpaying for schools, hospitals and universities.