UK economy still in recession

By staff

Britain’s economy shrunk by -0.4 per cent in the third quarter, making this the longest recession since records began.

Figures from the Office for National Statistics showed a provisional 0.4 per cent contraction in gross domestic product, defying analysts’ hopes the UK economy could have returned to growth.

Shadow chancellor George Osborne said the figures were proof Gordon Brown’s eocnbomic policy had failed.

“This is deeply disappointing news,” he said. “Britain is now in the deepest and longest recession in its modern history. Britain’s economy is still shrinking a full six months after France and Germany started growing.

“We now know that Gordon Brown’s recession plan has not worked, and this news has destroyed Labour’s claim that Britain was better placed than other countries to weather the storms.”

Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesman Vince Cable said: “For all the hopes of a quick recovery, these figures make it clear we are still in the longest and what could yet become the deepest recession on record.

“For all that has been thrown at the economy to try and stimulate a recovery it is clear that massive structural problems remain, particularly in the banking sector.”

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said: “This is now the longest recession in modern economic history. Even the co-ordinated world-wide stimulus has not been able to halt the damage done by the financial crash.”

The negative figure shows an improvement of negative growth of 0.6 per cent in the second quarter of 2009.

Britain entered recession in the second quarter of 2008.