UK avoids recession, latest figures show

Fears of an imminent recession fuelled by uncertainty around Brexit have proven unfounded according to figures released yesterday by the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The ONS published its quarterly report on gross domestic product (GDP) for the months from June to August 2019, showing a rise in GDP of 0.3%.

GDP is a measurement of the total value of goods and services and is used to estimate the health of the economy in terms of size and growth.

This particular data release had been widely anticipated as a key indicator of whether the UK had tipped into the recession widely predicted by commentators after a weak second quarter of 2019.

The statistics show variance across sectors with a 1.1% contraction in manufacturing balanced by stronger performance elsewhere.

Rob Kent-Smith, head of GDP at the ONS, said:

"Growth increased in the latest three months, despite a weak performance across manufacturing, with TV and film production helping to boost the services sector."

Although the headline figure shows modest growth over the whole period, monthly GDP growth for August in particular was negative, at -0.1%.

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