0.8% Growth For UK Economy

The UK economy has grown by 0.8% in the first quarter of 2014, official figures have claimed.

This is the fifth consecutive increase in GDP growth.

However, the Office for National Statistics (ONS), which published the findings, said the economy remains 0.6% smaller than its peak of 2008.

The growth figure, which is the first estimate for the quarter, is a slight increase on the 0.7% recorded in Q4 of 2013, and is a 3.1% on the same period a year previously.

However, many had predicted that the figure would be higher than stated, at around 0.9%.

In its report, the ONS said UK manufacturing output grew by 1.3%, while the service sector increased by 0.9%. Construction output, only grew by 0.3%, but the ONS said the sector had been affected by the storms and high rainfall in January and February; while agriculture was the only one of the four main industrial sectors to register a fall in output of 0.7%.

Commenting on the figures, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said: "Today's growth figures are another welcome sign that our economy is moving in the right direction – employment is up, growth is up.

"Skilled British workers in areas like our thriving automotive industry and our world class services sector are helping to rebalance the economy, building a fairer society for this generation and the next."


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