UK economy rebounds 15.5% in third quarter

London: Britain’s economy rebounded by 15.5 percent in the third quarter, emerging from a historic recession as initial coronavirus lockdown measures were relaxed, official data showed on Thursday.

“UK gross domestic product (GDP) is estimated to have grown by a record 15.5 percent in July to September… as lockdown measures were eased,” the Office for National Statistics said in a statement.

The economy, however, was still 9.7 percent smaller than before this year’s coronavirus-induced recession after a massive contraction in the second quarter.

Output in services, the production and construction sectors increased by record amounts in the third quarter, but the ONS cautioned that they were still below their pre-pandemic levels seen late last year.

The nation entered a painful recession after shrinking by a record 19.8 percent in the second quarter after 2.5 percent in the first, the ONS confirmed.

The technical definition of a recession is two quarterly contractions in a row.

The GDP numbers do not yet reflect the impact of England’s second round of stay-at-home lockdown restrictions that were imposed last week to curb soaring infection and death rates.

The data was published one day after Britain passed the grim milestone of 50,000 people who have died from the pandemic. It has so far suffered the highest death toll in Europe.


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