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UK Emerges from Recession

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The Office for National Statistics (ONS) reported that the UK’s gross domestic product increased by 0.6% in the first quarter of the year compared to the previous quarter. This rise follows contractions of 0.3% in the last quarter and 0.1% in the third quarter of the previous year, which had led the UK into a brief recession, defined as two successive quarters of economic decline.

The growth at the beginning of this year was primarily fueled by a broad-based increase in the dominant services sector, where output grew by 0.7% in the quarter, reversing the decline seen at the end of last year, according to the ONS.

Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt stated, “Despite the challenging past few years, today’s growth figures indicate that the economy is recovering to pre-pandemic levels.” This announcement comes in the lead-up to a general election later this year.

However, despite the overall economic growth, many individuals may not feel the benefits. Adjusted for inflation and population growth, per capita growth remains 0.7% lower than a year ago. “UK households have seen little substantial improvement in living standards over the past two years,” commented Gora Suri, an economist at PwC, in an interview with Reuters.