Economic growth remains lacklustre despite January fillip

UK growth remained subdued in the quarter to January ahead of Brexit despite a bigger-than-expected bounceback at the start of the year.

Official figures showed the UK economy grew by 0.5% month on month in January thanks to a recovery across the services, construction and manufacturing sectors.

The monthly rebound reversed a hefty 0.4% drop in gross domestic product (GDP) seen in December.

But it was not enough to boost the overall performance in the three months to January, with growth edging 0.2% higher, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

This was the same as the lacklustre growth seen in the final quarter of 2018.

Rob Kent-Smith, head of GDP at the ONS, said: “Across the latest three months, growth remained weak, with falls in manufacture of metal products, cars and construction repair work all dampening economic growth.

“These were offset by strong performances in wholesale, IT and health services.

“This sluggish growth came despite the economy bouncing back from a weak December.”

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