UK GDP comes in at 0.4% for third quarter, beating estimates

UK GDP: Britain's economy grew by 0.4% in the last quarter - live updates

The services sector, which accounts for the majority of the United Kingdom economy "continued to drive GDP growth", the Office for National Statistics said on Wednesday. Economists expected GDP to rise 0.3 percent in the third quarter.

By March 2009, interest rates had fallen to just 0.5 per cent. The services sector grew by a more underwhelming 1.5pc on the year.

Following the higher-than-anticipated results, the pound gained nearly 0.8 of a cent against the dollar to $1.32 at the time of writing, indicating that City traders are betting on a rate hike next week.

Economic growth picked up moderately in the third quarter as GDP increased by 0.4 per cent and the manufacturing sector returned to expansion. Manufacturing also boosted the economy with an improved performance after a weak second quarter.

In response to the figures Chancellor Phillip Hammond said: "The UK economy is successful and resilient".

A rate rise is seen as a negative for stock markets, which have grown fat from almost a decade of cheap money from central banks, however most believe Bank of England Governor Mark Carney will now be forced to hike at the Bank's next meeting on 2 November.


A rate rise by the BoE would act to curb inflation. With households feeling the squeeze as wage growth continues to fall behind inflation, concerns remain elevated over the sustainability of the U.K.'s consumer-driven economic growth.

"Yet if they do rise as expected, the move will be largely symbolic".

Recent months have seen growing speculation that a rate rise could be imminent, with many economists predicting that we may see an increase as early as November.

"Despite today's marginal improvement, growth has been relatively lacklustre this year".

The UK economy beat forecasts to grow by 0.4% in Q3, according to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), further increasing the likelihood of a Bank of England interest rate rise next Thursday.

"If the MPC doesn't raise interest rates on 2 November following this preliminary GDP estimate, Mark Carney will be branded as the central banker who cried wolf once too often".

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