Quarter UK growth 'may be boosted by Brexit stockpiling'

UK economic growth hits six-month low

UK economic growth hits six-month low

The UK economy posted just 0.3% growth in the three-month period to November, the lowest growth rate seen in six months, according to new data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The company blamed collapsing sales of diesel cars, the US-China trade war and uncertainty about how Brexit will unfold. A year ago recorded 11 consecutive months of negative sales growth in brick-and-mortar stores since January.

The ONS said the biggest brake on growth came from a drop in vehicle production of 4.3%.

"Growth in the United Kingdom economy continued to slow in the three months to November 2018 after performing more strongly through the middle of the year", said Rob Kent-Smith, the head of national accounts, ONS.

'Accountancy and house-building again grew but a number of other areas were sluggish.

Yet Remainers choose THIS moment to fight a rearguard action to stay in it.

"The monthly figure for November was a little bit better than expected, and was up from 0.1 percent in October and a flat performance in September and that was largely the service sector growing by 0.3 percent month on month -but monthly GDP figures are volatile", said Archer.

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Services output grew 0.3 percent from the previous month after a 0.2 percent increase in October.

The future of the deal which Prime Minister Theresa May has agreed in principle with the European Union hangs in the balance ahead of a parliamentary vote which will take place on Tuesday.

"The risks to our forecasts however, are tilted to the downside because of Brexit", Amit Kara, an economist at NIESR, said.

United Kingdom growth figures at 9.30am will provide the latest insight into how the economy is faring as Brexit looms. "For as long as this remains unclear, businesses will continue to defer major investment plans and households will reconsider making big-ticket purchases".

This is the final three-month GDP report that British lawmakers will have to mull over in the lead up to the Tuesday vote on prime minister Theresa May's Brexit deal.

There were several factors at play in the sharp slowdown, but that Brexit-related uncertainty was not primary, as there is a global slowdown of both services and manufacturing - the United Kingdom is part of that, Amit Kara, head of United Kingdom macroeconomic forecasting at the NIESR, told Xinhua.

November's monthly growth was driven largely by the dominant services sector, representing almost 80 percent of the economy, with growth broadly based, and driven by retail, wholesale, and auto trading, boosted by strong pre-Christmas retail sales.

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