Growth – but not as much as last quarter

Gross Domestic Product, Q3 2014

  • GDP increased by 0.7% in Q3 2014 compared with growth of 0.9% in Q2 2014.
  • GDP was 3.0% higher in Q3 2014 compared with the same quarter a year ago.
  • In Q3 2014 GDP was estimated to have been 3.4% higher than the pre-economic downturn peak of Q1 2008. From the peak in Q1 2008 to the trough in Q2 2009, the economy shrank by 6.0%

Retail sales up – or down depending on how you look at it

Retail Sales, September 2014

  • The quantity bought in the retail industry in September 2014 was estimated to have decreased by 0.3% compared with August 2014. However, it increased by 2.7% compared with September 2013 making this the 18th consecutive month of year-on-year growth. This is the longest period of sustained year-on-year growth since May 2008, when there were 31 periods of growth.
  • The underlying pattern continues to show growth with the rolling three-month on three-month growth rate increasing by 0.3%.  However, this was the slowest growth seen in this measure throughout 2014.
  • In September 2014, the amount spent in the retail industry decreased by 0.6% compared with August 2014.  However, it increased by 1.3% compared with September 2013. Non-seasonally adjusted data show that the average weekly spend in the retail industry in September 2014 was £6.9 billion compared with £6.8 billion in September 2013 and £6.9 billion in August 2014
  • The proportion of online sales were unchanged in September 2014 compared with August 2014 at 11.4%. Online sales increased by 10.1% compared with September 2013

UK unemployment below 2m

UK Labour Market, October 2014

Key Points for June to August 2014

  • There were 1.97 million unemployed people, 154,000 fewer than for March to May 2014 and 538,000 fewer than a year earlier. This is the largest annual fall in unemployment on record. Records for annual changes in unemployment begin in 1972.
  • The unemployment rate continued to fall, reaching 6.0% for June to August 2014, the lowest since late 2008. The unemployment rate is the proportion of the economically active population (those in work plus those seeking and available to work) who were unemployed.
  • There were 9.03 million people aged from 16 to 64 who were out of work and not seeking or available to work (known as economically inactive). This was 113,000 more than for March to May 2014 but 46,000 fewer than for a year earlier.
  • The economic inactivity rate was 22.2%, higher than for March to May 2014 (22.0%) but lower than for a year earlier (22.4%).
  • There were 30.76 million people in work. This was 46,000 more than for March to May 2014, the smallest quarterly increase since March to May 2013. Comparing June to August 2014 with a year earlier, there were 736,000 more people in work.
  • The proportion of people aged from 16 to 64 in work (the employment rate), was 73.0%, slightly higher than for March to May 2014 (72.9%) and higher than for a year earlier (71.5%).