British economic growth seen widening this quarter

Economy 1/11/2019, 6:10 PM
British economic growth seen widening this quarter

After a projected 0.3% expansion in the three months through December, unchanged from the official pace for the quarter ending with the previous month, the rate should climb to 0.4% in January, the National Institute of Economic and Social Research said on Friday. An update to its tracker showed growth should remain at the level, until the end of March. NIESR predicted what it called "a modest recovery" after a slowdown from 0.6%, registered for the third quarter.

The forecast for the fourth quarter figure was downgraded from 0.4% to below potential. It translates to a rise in gross domestic product of 1.5% for last year, where in the previous three months it was driven by services and construction, against a deceleration in manufacturing, the institute said and underscored the downward risks associated with the United Kingdom's departure from the European Union.

The slowdown comes alongside a general softening in global activity and is therefore not entirely attributable to uncertainty caused by Brexit, said Amit Kara, chief of macroeconomic forecasting, and claimed factory production growth is stabilizing.

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