Tell us about your experiences with Marketplace. Enter To Win

U.K. GDP decline worse than expected

Stephen Beard Jul 24, 2009
HTML EMBED:
COPY

U.K. GDP decline worse than expected

Stephen Beard Jul 24, 2009
HTML EMBED:
COPY

TEXT OF STORY

Steve Chiotakis: The British economy is still shrinking. Figures out today show a sharper decline in GDP than many analysts there had forecast. Our man in London, Stephen Beard, reports.


Stephen Beard: Britain’s battered economy withered again in the last quarter. GDP shrank by 0.8 percent. That’s better than in the horrendous first quarter, but still much worse than expected. One analyst said this is a wake-up call — a bucket of cold water for anyone already dreaming of recovery.

Justin Urquart-Stewart is with Seven Investment. He says the key to the continuing malaise is the consumer’s lack of confidence and credit:

Justin Urquart-Stewart When you actually look at the British economy, it is 60 percent dependent upon consumer spending. And we can see from these figures that consumer spending, especially services and financial services, have been very badly hit.

Today’s figures take the annual rate of contraction in the U.K. economy down to 5.6 percent. That’s the worst in more than 50 years. And almost exactly the same rate of decline as in the United States.

In London, this is Stephen Beard for Marketplace.

Marketplace is on a mission.

We believe Main Street matters as much as Wall Street, economic news is made relevant and real through human stories, and a touch of humor helps enliven topics you might typically find…well, dull.

Through the signature style that only Marketplace can deliver, we’re on a mission to raise the economic intelligence of the country—but we don’t do it alone. We count on listeners and readers like you to keep this public service free and accessible to all. Will you become a partner in our mission today?

Your donation is critical to the future of public service journalism. Support our work today – for as little as $5 – and help us keep making people smarter.