Contract prices on building sites have fallen at their fastest rate since 1991, adding to the pain in a sector that accounted for almost one in six insolvencies in the past three months.

The price of new tenders fell 4.9% in the first three months of the year, leading to a 6.4% total year-on-year drop, according to figures to be released today by the Building Costs Information Service, a division of the RICS.

Joe Martin, BCIS executive director, said that the decline in demand from cash-strapped developers was causing contractors to fight ever harder for the few remaining tenders, driving prices down.

Financial Times