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UK economy grew beyond pre-pandemic size before Omicron hit


The UK financial system grew above its pre-pandemic ranges for the primary time in November, supported by rising momentum throughout all industries earlier than the Omicron coronavirus variant hit the nation.

Output rose 0.9 per cent between October and November, accelerating strongly from near-stagnation within the earlier month, in response to knowledge from the Workplace for Nationwide Statistics. This was a lot greater than the 0.4 per cent forecast by economists polled by Reuters.

The rise took gross home output, or GDP, to 0.7 per cent above its degree in February 2020, earlier than the primary Covid-19 restrictions, indicating that the financial system had absolutely recovered the bottom misplaced through the pandemic.

Line chart of GDP index, Feb 2020=100 showing UK economy grew to above its pre-pandemic level in November

All industries grew strongly. The companies sector, which accounts for about 80 per cent of the financial system, expanded by 0.7 per cent, supported by a robust efficiency from the retail sector. Manufacturing rose greater than anticipated by 1 per cent and building rebounded by 3.5 per cent from the contraction within the earlier month.

Nonetheless, the info predates the surge in Covid-19 infections and self-isolation linked to the unfold of the Omicron variant.

“November’s improve in GDP most likely was reversed in December, as Omicron dealt a hefty blow to the patron companies sector,” stated Samuel Tombs, chief UK economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics.

Grant Fitzner, ONS chief economist stated: “The financial system grew strongly within the month earlier than Omicron struck with architects, retailers, couriers and accountants having a bumper month.”

He added that building additionally recovered from a number of weak months as many uncooked supplies grew to become simpler to acquire. 

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