The UK economy shrank in size between April and June 2019, the first fall since 2012. The news came as a surprise to the markets and if a second quarterly fall is confirmed later in the year then the UK economy would technically be in a recession.
Sajid Javid, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, rejected any notion of a second quarterly fall, saying:
“I am not expecting a recession at all. And in fact, don’t take my word for it. There’s not a single leading forecaster out there that is expecting a recession, the independent Bank of England is not expecting a recession. And that’s because they know that the fundamentals remain strong.”
John McDonnell, the Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, said:
“Today’s dismal economic figures are a direct result of Tory incompetence. The Tories’ Brexit bungling, including Boris Johnson now taking us towards no-deal, is breaking the economy. The Tories are responsible for tumbling business investment and stagnating productivity – and that, along with nine years of austerity, has contributed to GDP contracting today.”