UK Economy Expanded in Q1 Despite March Slide

The UK economy is stil defying expectations, though it's one thing to stave off recession – "going for growth" is an entirely different question

Alliance News 12 May, 2023 | 9:40AM
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UK economy

UK gross domestic product (GDP) grew 0.1% in the first quarter of 2023, despite a poor showing for the economy in March, according to numbers released on Friday.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said the UK economy grew 0.1% in the first three months of 2023, compared to the final quarter of last year. Growth was in line with FXStreet-cited market consensus. GDP also had grown 0.1% in the fourth quarter of 2022 from the third.

"In output terms, the services sector grew by 0.1% on the quarter driven by increases in information and communication, and administrative and support service activities," the ONS said.

"Elsewhere, the construction sector grew by 0.7% while the production sector grew by 0.1%, with a 0.5% growth in manufacturing."

However, UK GDP shrank by 0.3% monthly in March alone. It had been expected to remain flat, like it had in February. In January, UK GDP expanded by 0.5%, upwardly revised from 0.4% growth.

Year-on-year, first-quarter gross domestic product grew 0.2%, as expected. It had expanded 0.6% year-on-year in the fourth quarter of 2022.

The reading came a day the Bank of England wiped away its recession forecast for the UK. The central bank now expects gross domestic product to flat-line over the first two quarters of the year, having previously predicted a decline.

The BoE raised rates by 25 basis points as expected on Thursday, taking the bank rate to 4.50%.

By Eric Cunha, Alliance News news editor

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