UK Economy Growth Strong

Economic growth in the UK has recently been revised up to 0.9% for the second quarter of 2014, by the Office for National Statistics, with year-on-year growth standing at 3.2%.

The ONS also said that the UK reached its pre-recession peak earlier than previously thought, in the third quarter of 2013.

Services Good, Eurozone Bad

Growth was particularly strong in the dominant services sector (everything from lawyers to hairdressers and hotels) and also in construction from a buoyant housing market, with manufacturing figures weaker, though still positive, due to the resurgent economic issues in the Eurozone. Exports also suffered in the wake of this slowdown in foreign markets.

However, business investment, an important factor in generating sustainable economic success, reducing reliance on consumer spending and improving productivity, grew by a handy 11% in the second quarter and the Bank of England is forecasting growth of 3.5% for 2014.

Interest Rates

Despite these figures, against a background of low inflation and a potentially cooling housing market, the consensus among commentators still seems to be no interest rate rise until 2015.

The International Monetary Fund also expects the UK economy to outstrip other developed countries and recently upturned its forecasts for UK growth, to 3.2% in 2014 and to 2.7% in 2015, slowing due to the assumed interest rate rise in that year.

Crime Pays?

The calculation of growth figures for the UK economy is now in line with other countries, in that it includes spending on research and development as well as the dubious economic benefits of illegal drug sales, prostitution and weapons manufacture!!

Posted by John Hoskin