UK economy unexpectedly stalls in February

Pay strikes weigh on economy as cost-of-living crisis erodes value of wages

By AFP

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Demonstrators hold placards during a march by 'junior doctors', physicians who are not senior specialists but who may have years of experience, through central London. -  AFP
Demonstrators hold placards during a march by 'junior doctors', physicians who are not senior specialists but who may have years of experience, through central London. - AFP

Published: Thu 13 Apr 2023, 1:33 PM

Last updated: Thu 13 Apr 2023, 1:34 PM

The UK economy unexpectedly stalled in February with the country facing more strikes as a cost-of-living crisis erodes the value of wages, official data showed Thursday.

The zero-growth performance followed a 0.4-per cent expansion in January, the Office for National Statistics said, while the latest reading was worse than analyst expectations.

Darren Morgan, director of economic statistics at the ONS, said public-sector strikes including by teachers hit output, while "unseasonably mild weather led to falls in the use of electricity and gas".

However, construction picked up after a "poor" January and retail won a boost as many shops had a "buoyant month", he added.

Britain's economy had rebounded in January after narrowly avoiding recession in the last three months of 2022.

The government and Bank of England say they expect the country to dodge a recession this year despite the cost-of-living crisis as UK inflation remains above 10 per cent.


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