United Kingdom growth up 0.4 pct in Q3

27 October, 2017, 00:40 | Author: Franklin Nunez
  • The Bank of England in London | Leon Neal  Getty Images

This was a rise of 1.5 percent year-on-year, according to the Office for National Statistics, with services and manufacturing being the main drivers of growth, as well as the auto sector.

Services and manufacturing did well during the quarter, up by 0.4% and 1% respectively.

'While the services sector was the largest contributor to GDP growth in Q3, the latest data confirms that activity in the sector remains muted, with growth unchanged from the previous quarter. While motoring and retail also performed well, construction contracted for the second quarter in a row.

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However, although the GDP data was better than expected it is not strong and there are pockets of weakness that could come under even more pressure if the BoE does hike interest rates.

This raises the prospect of an interest rate rise when the Bank of England meets on 2 November.

This beat economists' forecasts for a 0.3% rise, and was largely thanks to growth in the business services and finance sector, which expanded by 0.6% in the three months to September.

There was no change to the annual rate of growth which remained at 1.5%, beating market expectations of a dip to 1.4%.

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Tej Parikh, senior economist at the Institute of Directors, said although it was just a first estimate, the 0.4% growth between July and September should be welcomed as a sign of resilience in British businesses.

Sterling shot up following the release, rising more than 0.3% against both the USA dollar and the euro to 1.317 and 1.119, respectively.

Today's healthcheck on the United Kingdom economy is particularly important, as chancellor Philip Hammond weighs up what tax and spending changes to make in November's budget. A 25 basis point increase merely reverses last year's cut - which was arguably unnecessary - and returns rates to where they've been for the entire post-crisis period. "The key uncertainty for the central bank is whether it will increase base rates any further in 2018".

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