UK economy grew 1% in June despite Freedom Day delay

UK economy grew 1% in June despite Freedom Day delay

THE UK economy grew by 1% in June despite the delay to easing lockdown restrictions.

The month-long delay to lifting Covid rules didn't prevent the economy from continuing its bounce back from the pandemic.

Growth in gross domestic product was up slightly compared to May, when it grew by 0.6%, according to the Office for National Statistics.

However, growth has slowed since April and March, when the economy expanded 2.3% and 2.1% respectively.

UK GDP remains 2.2% down compared to the pre-pandemic level recorded in February 2020.

Covid restrictions were due to be lifted from June 21, but "Freedom Day" was pushed back until July 19 as the spread of the virus accelerated.

That meant that social distancing, capacity limits and face coverings were required in pubs, restaurants and shops for an extra month.

But the reopening of indoor dining in pubs and restaurants on May 17 helped to boost economic growth.

The service sector was one of the main contributors to economic recovery in June, growing 1.5% overall as hospitality venues opened indoor areas.

Food and beverage services activities boosted growth in consumer-facing services, growing by 10.1% in June.

It was also boosted by health activities, as Brits began making GP appointments again following months of avoiding putting extra pressure on the NHS.

Overall, GDP grew by 4.8% in the three months to June 2021.

Retail sales grew strongly, pupil attendance increased as schools reopened from March 2021, and pubs and restaurants resumed trading.

More to follow…

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