UK

UK economy declines by more than expected in July amid strike impact

The ONS has revealed the latest GDP data for July dropped by 0.5% (Victoria Jones/PA)
The ONS has revealed the latest GDP data for July dropped by 0.5% (Victoria Jones/PA) The ONS has revealed the latest GDP data for July dropped by 0.5% (Victoria Jones/PA)

The UK economy shrank surprisingly sharply in July as the health sector was impacted by further industrial action and retailers were knocked by wet weather.

Data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed that gross domestic product (GDP) contracted by 0.5% in July.

Economists had forecast a 0.2% decline for the month.

It came after a 0.5% monthly increase in June.

ONS director of economic statistics Darren Morgan said: “Our initial estimate for July shows that GDP fell; however, the broader picture looks more positive, with the economy growing across the services, production and construction sectors in the last three months.

“In July, industrial action by healthcare workers and teachers negatively impacted services, and it was a weaker month for construction and retail due to the poor weather.

“Manufacturing also fell back following its rebound from the effect of May’s extra bank holiday.”