UK economy contracts 0.3% in April

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The UK’s (UK) gross domestic product (GDP) declined by 0.3 per cent in April after a 0.1 per cent drop in March, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has said.

For the first time since January 2021, the output of all the main sectors (services, production and construction) fell in April, Xinhua news agency reported.

Services, the main contributors to April’s fall, declined by 0.3 per cent.

Production dropped by 0.6 per cent, driven by a 1 per cent fall in manufacturing on the month, as businesses struggled with price rises and supply chain shortages, the ONS said.

Construction also shrunk 0.4 per cent in April after strong growth in March, when significant repair and maintenance activities were needed following the storms in February.

“A big drop in the health sector due to the winding down of the test and trace scheme pushed the UK economy into negative territory in April,” Darren Morgan, director of economic statistics at the ONS, explained on Twitter.

“Manufacturing also suffered with some companies telling us they were being affected by rising fuel and energy prices

The ONS noted that the UK’s monthly GDP in April was 0.9 per cent higher than its pre-Covid-19 pandemic level in February 2020.

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