The UK grew at its fastest rate since the end of 2016 in the third quarter of this year, revealed by the Office for National Statistics.
Gross domestic product rose by 0.6 per cent in Q3 of 2018, which was in line with economist’s expert opinions. The unexpected main boost this year came from our prolonged British summertime which lead to an increase in consumer spending and construction activity picked up. The overall growth tapered off throughout August and September.
UK growth higher than the Eurozone
While the UK’s third-quarter growth might pale in comparison to the 0.9 per cent reported in the US; it certainly stands up well against the 0.2 per cent reported for the Eurozone, beating France’s 0.4 per cent and Italy’s unfortunate zero. Germany’s data will be released at a later date.
Despite the impressive economic growth, it’s expected that households are now likely to demonstrate extra caution on the Christmas spend this year with the cost of living still squeezed and the confusion about Brexit still looming.
What’s next for the UK economy?
Suren Thiru, Head of Economics at the British Chambers of Commerce comments: “While the pick-up in GDP growth in the third quarter is welcome, the stronger headline figure masks a loss of momentum through the quarter from the particularly strong July out-turn, when a number of temporary factors, including the heatwave and the World Cup, boosted activity.”
“It remains likely that the stronger growth recorded in the third quarter is a one-off for the UK economy, with persistent Brexit uncertainty and the financial squeeze on consumers and businesses likely to weigh increasingly on economic activity in the coming quarters."
“To ease the extent of current uncertainty, the government must deliver a comprehensive Brexit deal that gives firms the clarity and precision they need.”
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