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Economic growth stronger than expected

The Office for National Statistics has revised up the economic growth for the last quarter of 2009, from 0.1% to 0.3%.

January’s figures for the last quarter of 2009 indicated that the UK had come out of the longest recession since the 1950s, when quarterly measurements were introduced.

The change comes from strong December results, and 77% of the data complete. The previous figure had used just 41% of data.

Services for the quarter grew strongly in December, and the figure has been revised up from 0.1% to 0.5% growth. Increases in growth were reported in motor vehicle services, wholesaling, transport services and business services, such as computer, legal and accountancy services.

Utilities also reported increased growth, up to 0.4% from 0.1% in initial estimates for production, and up from -2.7%from -3.3% for output.

Manufacturingoutput was revised up to 0.8% from 0.4%, due to the refining of energy products, chemicals, metals, engineering including cars, other transport equipment, aircraft, mechanical and electrical, textiles, other manufacturing and paper production and publishing.

The full figures will be published on 30 March.

Readers' comments (2)

  • Economic growth stronger than previously thought? Apparently only because the hole was deeper...

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  • Ahh you gotta love the ONS... it looks better because it was actually worse last time, they just didn't know. The expression "clutching at straws" comes to mind.

    Unfortunately as Mr. Conway says with everyone "fixated on the headline percentage numbers, the significance of this will doubtless be lost on most people."

    And rather worryingly, the ONS, usually a fairly reliable and trustworthy body when it comes to releasing figures that makes the chancellor squirm, comes out with a blatantly misleading headline “Services growth in December pushes up GDP estimate”

    Growth built on unprecedented government handouts is not growth, no mater how you juggle the figures. Strikes me as more smoke and mirrors.

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