UK economy stands still in February 2020

UK economy view of City of London

According to the most recent numbers available, the size of our economy pretty much stood still in February, shrinking slightly by -0.1%.

What are the details for February?

The GDP*, or size of the UK economy;
• Overall contracted (got smaller) by -0.1% in February
• The Services sector stood still with no growth or contraction (such as banking, technology, legal)
• The Production sector increased by 0.1% (such as manufacturing).
• The Construction sector contracted by -1.7%

So the UK economy basically stood still in February?

Overall, the size of the UK economy pretty much stayed the same, although some areas did better than others. The Construction sector shrank quite a large amount, which pushed our economy as a whole into a -0.1% fall.

How does this compare with recent months?

The figure for one month can be misleading if one area of the economy does very well or very poorly in that month. If we look at the three month period from December to February, the economy grew by 0.1% overall. So again, over a three month period, our overall economy basically stood still.

According to Rob Kent-Smith of the ONS;

“Today’s figures show that in the three months to February, which was before the full effects of Coronavirus took hold, the economy continued to show little to no growth.
Most elements of the services sector grew, though manufacturing continued to decline. Construction saw a notable fall in February, as wet weather and flooding hampered housebuilding.”

Sources and Notes

This information is published by the ONS (Office for National Statistics), which is the official UK government agency that provides data for the UK.

* The size of our economy is measured by GDP or Gross Domestic Product. This is a way of adding up all of the economic activity, from all of the companies and public sector, to get an amount which tells us how much an economy is worth.

https://www.ons.gov.uk/economy/grossdomesticproductgdp/bulletins/gdpmonthlyestimateuk/february2020