Press Release: NIESR Monthly GDP Tracker - UK economy slows as stockpiling boost fades

Published: 10th June 2019

 

UK economy slows as stockpiling boost fades

 

 

Main points

  • The UK economy is on course to contract by 0.2 per cent in the second quarter of 2019, a marked slowdown from the first quarter when growth was boosted by stockbuilding ahead of the original Brexit departure date (figure 1).
  • According to new ONS statistics published this morning, the UK economy expanded by 0.3 per cent in the three months to April.  This outturn was weaker than the 0.4 per cent growth rate that we forecast last month for the same period.   
  • The slowdown in the three-month growth rate was associated with a 0.4 per cent fall in GDP in April, driven by falls in the production and construction sectors. Within manufacturing, there was a 24 per cent fall in car manufacturing related to factory shutdowns planned for after the original Brexit departure date.  Output in the service sector was flat in April.
  • Recent surveys suggest that there has not been a material recovery in output in May.  Economic contraction of 0.2 per cent in the second quarter is expected to be mainly driven by the production and construction sectors, with a small positive contribution from the service sector.

 

Garry Young, Head of Macroeconomic Modelling and Forecasting, saidThe UK economy is on course to contract by 0.2 per cent in the second quarter.  The latest GDP data were weaker than expected, partly reflecting shifts in production around the original Brexit departure date, including a 24 per cent fall in car manufacturing.  The underlying picture is also quite weak, with Brexit-related uncertainty at home and trade tensions abroad dragging on investment spending and economic growth”.

 

 

 

Please find the full commentary in attachment.

 

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Notes for editors:

 

For further information please contact the NIESR Press Office or Paola Buonadonna on 020 7654 1923/ p.buonadonna [at] niesr.ac.uk

 

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