UK GDP Grows At Fastest Pace In A Year

Britain’s economy grew at its fastest pace in almost a year during the three months to July, boosted by stronger consumer spending due to the World Cup and warm weather.

Gross domestic product in the three months to July was 0.6 percent higher than in the previous three-month period, gathering pace from 0.4 percent recorded in the three months to June and at the top end of forecasts in a poll.

This data is likely to reassure the Bank of England which raised interest rates last month for only the second time since the financial crisis, forecasting third-quarter growth of 0.4 percent and a lacklustre 2018 expansion of 1.4 percent.

Monday’s data showed that Britain’s dominant services sector grew by 0.6 percent in the three months to July, its biggest rise since January 2017, while 3.3 percent growth in the much smaller construction sector was the fastest since February 2017.

Industrial output, however, contracted by 0.5 percent over the period, hurt by broad-based falls across manufacturing, oil and gas extraction and electricity generation.

Nonetheless, Britain’s trade deficit in both goods alone and goods and services fell to its smallest since February, beating economists’ forecasts in a Reuters poll.

The goods trade deficit dropped to 9.973 billion pounds in July from 10.679 billion the month before, and the total trade deficit in goods and services fell to just 111 million pounds.

Theresa May’s Conservative Party faces a “catastrophic split” if she persists with her proposals on Brexit, which 80 or more of her lawmakers are prepared to vote.

If 80 of May’s 315 lawmakers voted against a Brexit deal based on her proposals the fate of the government and Brexit would depend on the Labour Party because she would not command the 320 votes in the 650-seat parliament necessary.

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