GDP FIGURE STILL UNDERESTIMATES TRUE MOMENTUM IN THE ECONOMY
May 28 2015.



- GDP growth in Q1 2015 was 0.3%, unrevised from the previous estimate

- Production and construction figures are revised slightly upwards, while services are revised slightly down

- Business investment rose by 1.7% between Q4 2014 and Q1 2015

- The trade deficit widened from £9.6bn in Q4 2014 to £13.2bn in Q1 2015


Commenting on the second estimate of UK GDP for Q1 2015 published today by the ONS, David Kern, Chief Economist at British Chambers of Commerce said: “The unrevised GDP growth figure understates the true momentum in the economy. While we expected weaker growth at the start of 2015, this figure exaggerates the scale of the slowdown and is likely to be revised upwards.

“When you dive into the detail, there is a mixed picture. On a positive note, production and construction figures have been revised upwards and business investment also recorded a healthy increase. However, it is troubling that the trade deficit has widened, with exports falling and imports increasing.

“The government must spark a revolution in exports by encouraging more businesses to explore international markets. Unless we see firm action to improve our export performance, it will be difficult to sustain strong growth in the long-term. This must be a priority for the government.”