UK Q1 2019 GDP growth estimated at 0.5% (QoQ) and 1.8% (YoY); Manufacturing output soars; Trade deficit widens

UK gross domestic product (GDP) in volume terms was estimated to have increased by 0.5% in Q1 (January to March) 2019. In comparison with the same quarter a year ago (Q1 2018) UK GDP increased by 1.8%, the fastest growth since Q3 2017.

UK GDP upto Q1 2019

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European Union and Eurozone trade statistics for 2018 – EU swings to a trade deficit; EU – record trade surplus with the U.S. and record trade deficit with Russia; UK had largest intra-EU trade deficit

The first estimate of Euro area or Eurozone (EA19) and European Union (EU28) trade statistics by Eurostat for 2018 reveals several interesting insights.

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European Commission (again) cuts GDP growth forecast for the European Union; Bank of England cuts UK GDP growth forecast; Germany forecast to grow slower than the UK despite Brexit

The European Commission slashed their GDP growth forecast for the European Union (excluding the United Kingdom) and the Eurozone for 2019 and 2020 citing slowing growth in China and weakening global trade.

The growth forecast for 2019 for the European Union (excluding the United Kingdom) was cut to 1.5% for 2019 (was previously forecast 2%) and for the Eurozone was cut to 1.3% (was previously forecast 1.9%).

Germany, Italy and the Netherlands all saw big downgrades for their growth outlook.

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UK household credit growth remains robust despite Brexit as outstanding household debt hits 80% of GDP

Household credit growth has been slowing around most of the world including the United States, Canada and Australia but remains robust in the United Kingdom despite economic concerns around Brexit. Household debt excluding student loans has hit 80% of GDP and including student loans has hit 90% of GDP.

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2019, a year that will be different

At the outset, we wish you a Happy New Year!

Today, the 3rd of January has been a record day every year (for at least the last 15 years) for several things. For starters you have online returns (in the U.S. and the U.K.), gym memberships and dating website(s) signups peaking on the day. But this year is different so expect the unexpected. We can’t write about everything today but cover four topics (Retail, Technology, Interest Rates and Debt).

2019

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The UK just changed the way they account for student loans which means the UK will likely have a fiscal deficit at least until the 2040s

The UK’s higher education funding system is unique in many ways and a change today is quite significant in terms of fiscal accounting. Firstly, here’s a timeline of the student loan system in the UK.

UK Student Loan Policy Timeline

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Nominal wages in the UK grew fastest in a decade but real wages are still lower than a decade ago

As widely expected, wages are rising in the UK, at least partially due to labour shortages down to Brexit. Nominal wage growth was fastest in a decade, but real (adjusted for inflation) wages are still lower than a decade ago. We recently also wrote about why wages weren’t rising despite record employment and labour shortages.

Great Britain average weekly earnings excluding bonuses annual growth rates November 2018

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