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ONS Monthly GDP August 2019

UK gross domestic product (GDP) grew 0.3% in the three months to August following a 0.1% rise in the previous three-month period. Services was the main driver to growth on a three-month rolling basis, rising 0.4%. Construction also posted a marginal rise (0.1%) while Production fell 0.4%.

Monthly GDP for August contracted 0.1% with three out of five components reporting a decline.

Growth, three-months on previous three-months, UK, July to September 2018 until June to August 2019

Source: ONS

Production

Monthly Production growth fell 0.6% in August, following a 0.1% decline in July. This was driven by volatility in the manufacture of pharmaceutical products which fell back in August, reversing the sharp rise in the previous month.

In the three months to August, the Production sector fell 0.4%, with its largest component, Manufacturing, contracting 1.1%. The overall decline in Manufacturing was somewhat offset by the manufacture of transport equipment which continues to bounce back from April’s weakness. Stronger growth was reported in the electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply component which increased 3.2%.

Construction

Construction rose 0.1% in the three months to August driven by private new housing, public housing repair and maintenance, and private commercial.

On a monthly basis, construction returned to growth, up by 0.2% in August. This was driven by non-housing repair and maintenance, private commercial and public new housing.

Services

Meanwhile, the Services sector reported the strongest growth rate in the three months to August, rising 0.4%. This was driven by the professional, scientific and technical sector, which experienced broad-based growth across its sub-industries. The largest contributor to GDP growth however was motion pictures (including TV and music) which has performed strongly over the course of 2019. 

On a monthly basis, Services was flat in August, following growth of 0.3% in July 2019. Legal activities and wholesale and retail trade, and repair of motor vehicles were positive contributors to growth while employment activities, and food and beverage service activities negatively impacted the Services sector.

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