UK growth confirmed at 1% for Q3 2012

Thursday 29 November 2012

Tax incentives

UK gross domestic product (GDP) increased by one per cent during the third quarter of the year, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has confirmed.

The official statistics provider said it was close to making a downwards revision to its preliminary growth report, but eventually confirmed the earlier figure.

However David Kern, chief economist at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said it was disappointing to see the ONS revise down the growth rates for both the production and construction industries.

"It is also concerning to see annual growth revised slightly down from zero per cent to -0.1 per cent, compared with the third quarter of 2011," he stated.

Mr Kern said that overall the quarterly figures published by the ONS have been "fairly erratic".

He claimed that the British Chamber of Commerce's quarterly survey, which signalled weaker growth in Q3 2012 and a stronger performance for the first half of 2012, gives "a more accurate picture" of the UK economy.

"Longer term trends are more important than quarterly fluctuations, and these figures confirm that the economy has been stagnant over the past year and has only seen minimal growth since the autumn of 2010," Mr Kern said.

He commented that the positive growth recorded by business investment and exports "does provide some hope".

"While the economic outlook is difficult in the face of a recession in the eurozone and poor borrowing figures in the UK, British businesses are showing their resilience by investing and growing exports," Mr Kern stated.

But he said businesses cannot do it alone, so will be looking to the Chancellor to deliver more policies to drive growth and support UK businesses in his Autumn Statement next week.

Posted by Dan Smith