British economy contracts 0.6% in fourth quarter

20:59, February 25, 2011      

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The British economy decreased more than expected in the fourth quarter of 2010, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said in a revised report Friday.

Gross domestic product in Britain contracted 0.6 percent in the fourth quarter, revised down from the previously estimated decline of 0.5 percent, the ONS report said.

The ONS report showed that the growth of production industries output in Britain was revised down from 0.9 percent to 0.7 percent in the latest quarter.

British construction output fell 2.5 percent in the fourth quarter, revised from a drop of 3.3 percent in the previous estimate released one month ago.

Output in the service industries was revised down to a 0.7-percent tumble in the last quarter of 2010 from a drop of 0.5 percent. The decline was driven by a slide in business services of 1.1 percent, together with a fall of 1.4 percent in transport, storage and communications services.

Britain's economy suffered a serious recession in recent years and the GDP declined from the second quarter of 2008 to the third quarter of last year.

The economy began its recovery in the last quarter of 2009 and the GDP increased 1.1 percent in the second quarter of 2010, the strongest gain last year.

Some analysts say a large-scale government spending cut would hurt the recovery in the coming quarters, although a double-dip recession seems unlikely.

Source: Xinhua
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