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UK Economy Entered a Recession In Fourth Quarter Of 2023

Image Source: Octus_Photography / Shutterstock

The United Kingdom’s Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed that the country’s economy entered a technical recession in the final quarter of 2023, as all three primary sectors experienced a downturn.

During the fourth quarter, the ONS reported a 0.2% decline in services output, a 1% decrease in production, and a 1.3% contraction in construction output. This recession follows a year of slow growth, with the British GDP estimated to have expanded by only 0.1% compared to the previous year.

Finance Minister Jeremy Hunt identified high inflation as the main obstacle to growth, noting that inflation remains well above the Bank of England’s 2% target. He emphasized the need for steady interest rates to address this issue and expressed confidence in the future, referencing forecasts of strengthened growth, increasing wages, lower mortgage rates, and minimal unemployment.

Marcus Brookes, the chief investment officer at Quilter Investors, described the recession as potentially shallow and transitory, attributable to factors such as high inflation, labor market weaknesses, and adverse weather. Brookes anticipates a modest recovery throughout 2024, with decreasing inflation potentially easing pressure on households and supporting economic revival.

Neil Birrell, chief investment officer at Premier Miton Investors, recognized concerns about economic resilience but highlighted the possibility of interest rate cuts if inflation and growth accelerate.

As the UK confronts these economic challenges, experts stress the importance of monitoring inflation, wage growth, and consumer demand indicators to gain insights into the country’s recovery path.

Image Source: Octus_Photography / Shutterstock

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