Official data says UK economic performance worse than thoughtFollow @PwC_NI
The UK economy shrank by 0.4% in the last three months of 2011, worse than the previously estimated fall of 0.3%, according to today’s data [Thursday 28 June] from the Office of National Statistics (ONS).
ONS also says it’s provisional estimate for the first quarter of 2012 – a 0.3% decline – is accurate.
Commenting on the revised data, Dr Esmond Birnie, PwC’s chief economist in Northern Ireland said:
“The big picture is that the UK economy has been broadly flat for the past 18 months, with output in Q1 2012 at the same level as in Q3 2010.
“Construction continues to be a major worry, with household spending down 0.1% as against the previous estimate of 0.1% growth and export activity also constrained.
“The economic climate is not helped by today’s government spending statistics showing that government spending in Quarter 1 of 2012 grew at its fastest rate in nearly seven years.
“If we factor in the additional holiday for the Queen’s Jubilee celebrations, is possible that growth in the second quarter of the year will also be negative.
“If that's the case for the UK as a whole, it is likely that Northern Ireland is in recession territory, further suggesting that 2012 will show no growth at best.
“That begs the question as to how the Executive can stimulate private sector activity while under immense pressure to curtail public spending even further.”
Email: Esmond Birnie
Tel: +44 (0)28 9041 5808