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15th February 2024

GDP figures suggest technical recession

The ONS has published the latest GDP data for December and the three months to December.

Paul Butterworth, CEO at Chambers Wales South East, South West and Mid, said:

“GDP fell in December by 0.1% and by 0.3% in Q4. These contractions suggest that the UK economy is in technical recession and confirms the low to no growth cycle businesses have had to operate in during the last quarter.

“Businesses in Wales were already under no illusion about the difficulties they face amid the economic uncertainty of recent months, driven by high inflation and interest rates.

“In the upcoming Spring Statement, the Chancellor must set out clear measures to aid long-term growth to provide firms with the confidence to plan, invest and innovate, as well as resolve ongoing skills challenges.”

Alex Veitch, Director of Policy and Insight at the British Chambers of Commerce, said:

“A contraction in GDP for the final quarter of 2023 means the UK economy is in technical recession. Businesses were already under no illusion about the difficulties they face, and this news will no doubt ring alarm bells for Government.

“The BCC’s last Quarterly Economic Forecast suggests annual growth below 1.0% for the next two years as firms remained gripped by uncertainty and the twin perils of high inflation and interest rates remain.

“The Chancellor must use his Budget in just under three weeks’ time to set out a clear pathway for firms and the economy to grow.

“Businesses are crying out for a long-term economic plan that reduces the cost pressures they are facing and unlocks the investment they so sorely need.”

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