The U.K. ended 2016 on a high, recording an unexpected acceleration in growth thanks to the biggest boost from net trade in almost six years.
The question is whether this new economic mix can persist, with the weaker pound helping to deliver a continued export pickup, offsetting a smaller contribution from shoppers who are about to be squeezed by faster inflation. That would help support the economy through the uncertainty from the looming Brexit negotiations, which will see the U.K. begin the process of untangling itself from a four-decade membership of the European Union.
The latest overview of the economy showed that gross domestic product rose 0.7 percent in the three months through December, revised up from 0.6 percent to what was the fastest pace in a year. Trade and consumer spending provided the biggest contributions as business investment fell.