The UK’s economic situation could be argued to be either better or worse than previously believed, following latest GDP data revisions from ONS.
The UK economy grew by 0.3% in the first quarter of 2013. And latest revisions to historical GDP data for the UK mean that the 2012 double-dip recession never happened. However, the 2008/2009 recession has now been found to have been significantly deeper than previously believed. These are among the headline findings of the latest data release on economic growth from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), published today (Thursday 27 June 2013).
So are things looking better or worse for the UK economy? I’d love to hear your view!
UK economy grew by 0.3% in Q1 2013
Gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 0.3% in the first quarter of 2013, according to latest revised estimates from ONS published today (Thursday 27 June 2013).
This is unchanged from both the preliminary and first revised estimates of 0.3% GDP growth in Q1 2013, as previously published by ONS.
2012 double-dip recession never happened
The 2012 double-dip recession has been revised away, according to the latest ONS data. ONS says:
GDP growth between Q4 2011 and Q1 2012 has been revised from a fall of 0.1% to flat, thereby removing the phenomenon of two consecutive quarters of negative growth.
2008/2009 recession significantly worse than previously thought
The recession suffered by the UK economy in 2008/2009 was significantly worse than previously thought. According to ONS:
The peak to trough fall of the economic downturn in 2008/09 is now estimated to be 7.2%.
The UK economy also has further to go to make up for lost growth. ONS says:
In Q1 2013, GDP was estimated to have been 3.9% lower than the pre-financial crisis peak in Q1 2008. Previously GDP was estimated to have been 2.6% lower for the same period.
This means that the UK’s path back to full economic recovery will inevitably be longer and more arduous than was previously expected.
All eyes now on next month’s Q2 GDP figures
The ONS releases its preliminary estimate of GDP growth in the second quarter or 2013 next month (on Thursday 25 July 2013).
As we reported earlier in the week, many economic commentators (the Bank of England included) are optimistic that the UK’s return to recovery will be sustained, predicting that GDP growth will come in at around 0.5% in Q2 2013.
However, as XpertHR’s economic commentary article for June 2013 notes, while the UK economy has returned to growth in 2013, the underlying picture is one of protracted economic stagnation rather than recovery for the UK.
- UK GDP forecasts round-up June 2013: ‘All cylinders now firing’ for return to economic growth?
- XpertHR economic commentary June 2013: No silver bullet
- Did the UK actually suffer a double-dip recession in 2012?
- Quarterly National Accounts, Q1 2013 Access the latest data on UK GDP, via the ONS website.