United Kingdom: The economy loses steam in the three months to October
December 10, 2018
According to monthly GDP data released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), economic activity rose 0.1% in October over the prior month in seasonally-adjusted terms, up from September’s flat reading. The quarter-on-quarter expansion for the August-October period was 0.4%, matching market expectations and down from 0.6% growth in the July-September period.
Looking at a sector-by-sector picture, the slowdown in August-October came on the back of slower growth in services and construction, and a stagnating manufacturing sector. Services growth was depressed by lower car sales, while manufacturing suffered from a decline in the volatile pharmaceutical industry.
All in all, the monthly GDP data suggests a slowdown in the final quarter of the year, which is also corroborated by recent soft PMI and retail sales figures.
UK GDP Forecast
The Central Bank expects the economy to expand 1.7% in both 2019 and 2020. FocusEconomics panelists see GDP expanding 1.5% in both 2019 and 2020.
Author: Oliver Reynolds, Economist