In the first quarter of 2014, the UK economy grew by 0.8%, marking the fifth consecutive period of growth and a slight increase on the 0.7% recorded for the fourth quarter of 2013. Output is now only 0.6% below the 2008 peak, and with steady growth anticipated in the next quarter, the catch-up point is imminent. There was growth across all the major sectors of the economy, with manufacturing performing particularly well, as output grew by 1.3%, its strongest quarter for nearly four years.
The Eurozone struggled in the first quarter of 2014 as dismal growth figures dented talk of a recovery. Although the economy grew by 0.2%, in line with growth in the previous quarter, this was much weaker than economists had predicted.
China’s economy grew at an annual rate of 7.4% in the first quarter of 2013, slowing from a 7.7% increase in the final quarter of 2013, but higher than the 7.3% increase which was expected by economists. It is the slowest level in 18 months as the world’s second largest economy continued to downshift.
The US economy grew slowly at an annualised rate of 0.1% in the first quarter, the slowest rate for a year and a fall on the 2.6% growth in the final quarter of 2014.
This report contains quarterly statistics data for markets around the world.