UK GDP beats consensus forecasts but experts warn of bleak data for 2022

'Storm clouds' ahead

Lauren Mason
clock • 3 min read
"Storm clouds were gathering in late November and early December with the emergence of the Omicron variant"
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"Storm clouds were gathering in late November and early December with the emergence of the Omicron variant"

UK GDP returned to pre-pandemic levels during the month of November following growth of 0.9%, according to the latest figures from the Office of National Statistics, although industry commentators warn that Omicron fears near the end of the month could feed through to December’s data.

The latest GDP data shows that November's growth surpassed that seen in February 2020 - before the pandemic - by 20 basis points. The data more than doubled consensus forecasts of 0.4% and increased nine-fold compared to October's GDP of 0.1%. This was driven by expansion in production at 1%, construction at 3.5% and services at 0.7%. Alan Custis, managing director and portfolio manager on the UK equity team at Lazard Asset Management, said the market will "already be looking through this strength" and weighing the impact that the UK Government's ‘Plan B' rule introductions will have had...

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