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Businesses welcome latest GDP figures but say ‘further action needed’

 

Business leaders have declared that Britain’s economy is ‘moving in the right direction’ after new figures revealed that UK GDP has risen at its fastest rate in three years.

 

According to the latest quarterly figures from the Office for National Statistics, UK economic output increased by 0.8% between July and September, with growth recorded across every sector.

 

The data surpasses the 0.7% rate of growth recorded in the previous quarter, and is the strongest performance since 2010.

 

However, the UK economy is still 2.5% below the level recorded before the start of the recession.

 

The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) welcomed the latest figures, but it warned that the UK is still trailing behind other major economies.

 

BCC Director General, John Longworth, said: ‘This is the highest quarterly increase we've seen in three years, so the economy is clearly moving in the right direction. But we are still behind a number of advanced economies, such as the US and Germany, that have managed to recover the output lost during the economic downturn.’

 

Meanwhile, Graeme Leach, chief economist at the Institute of Directors, commented: ‘The outlook looks better than at any time since the onset of the financial crisis. Indeed, our members have more confidence in the economy than at any time since 2008.

 

‘However, strong headwinds remain and the annual growth rate year on year is nothing to get too excited about yet. Though inflationary pressures are likely to remain benign, debt and inflation are rising faster than earnings. Much more needs to be done to transform our economy from being good to being really great’.