UK growth disappoints as election looms

U.K. gross domestic product (GDP) expanded slower than expected in the first quarter, in the last major economic indicator before the country’s general election in nine days’ time.

A first estimate from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) showed that GDP grew by 0.3 percent quarter-on-quarter, below a forecast of 0.5 percent, according to a poll of analysts by Reuters.

Although services output increased by 0.5 percent over the period, the headline figures was pulled down by the three other main sectors. Construction fell by 1.6 percent, production slid 0.1 percent and agriculture fell by 0.2 percent, the ONS said.

The data will not be welcomed by U.K. Prime Minister, David Cameron, who has made the strength of the economy a key part of his campaign ahead of a general election on May 7. Sterling fell to $1.5185 after the data.

Responding to the data, Cameron and U.K. Finance Minister, George Osborne, said the economy was still growing, but that the recovery could not be taken for granted.


This article is for general information purposes only. It is not investment advice or a solution to buy or sell securities. Opinions are the authors; not necessarily that of OANDA Corporation or any of its affiliates, subsidiaries, officers or directors. Leveraged trading is high risk and not suitable for all. You could lose all of your deposited funds.

Craig Erlam

Craig Erlam

Senior Market Analyst, UK & EMEA at OANDA
Based in London, Craig Erlam joined OANDA in 2015 as a market analyst. With many years of experience as a financial market analyst and trader, he focuses on both fundamental and technical analysis while producing macroeconomic commentary. His views have been published in the Financial Times, Reuters, The Telegraph and the International Business Times, and he also appears as a regular guest commentator on the BBC, Bloomberg TV, FOX Business and SKY News. Craig holds a full membership to the Society of Technical Analysts and is recognised as a Certified Financial Technician by the International Federation of Technical Analysts.
Craig Erlam
Craig Erlam

Latest posts by Craig Erlam (see all)