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6th successive quarter of recession confirmed

6th successive quarter of recession confirmed

Category: Economy

Updated: 22/12/2009
First Published: 22/12/2009

This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

The extent of the contraction in the UK economy during the third quarter of 2009 was not as marked as first thought, although figures confirm that the country has been in recession for six consecutive quarters.

In the second revision of gross domestic product (GDP), the economy was found to have contracted by 0.2 percent between July and September. The original estimate found a 0.4 per cent drop in output, which was subsequently changed to 0.3 per cent.

While the extent of the recession in the third quarter has been revised down, the figures will come as a disappointment to some analysts and experts who had thought the final estimate would report a mere 0.1 per cent contraction.

When the figures for the third quarter were originally published, the findings defied many predictions that the UK economy had returned to growth, escaping recession as have many of the world's other major economies, such as USA, Germany, France and Japan.

Just yesterday, the CBI said the UK would come out of recession by the end of 2009, returning to pre-recession levels by the end of 2011.

"This was a smaller-than-expected upward revision of an earlier forecast of a 0.3 per cent decline," said foreign exchange specialist, Travelex.

"The data did little to alter the negative sentiment towards the pound at the moment, due to the general weakness of the UK economy and market anxiety over the UK's ballooning deficit. This was also exacerbated by the CBI's prediction this week that the economy will not return to pre-recession growth levels for at least two years."

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