London (CNN Business) — UK economic output shrank by 20.4% in the second quarter of 2020, the worst quarterly slump on record, pushing the country into the deepest recession of any major global economy.
UK crashes into deepest recession of any major economyBusiness & Finance News
This crash in GDP in the April-June period, compared with the first quarter, is the worst since quarterly records began in 1955. Industries most exposed to government lockdown measures to contain the coronavirus pandemic — services, production and construction — saw record drops.
“Today’s figures confirm that hard times are here,” UK finance minister Rishi Sunak said in a statement. “Hundreds of thousands of people have already lost their jobs, and sadly in the coming months many more will. But while there are difficult choices to be made ahead, we will get through this, and I can assure people that nobody will be left without hope or opportunity.”
Compared with the end of 2019, UK economic output fell by a cumulative 22.1% in the first six months of 2020, a worse outcome than Germany, France and Italy, and double the 10.6% fall recorded in the United States, the Office for National Statistics said.
Among the remaining G7 economies, the decline in GDP is also expected to be less severe than in Britain. Canada’s statistics agency said it expects second quarter GDP to shrink 12% on the previous quarter, while economists surveyed by Reuters predict a 7.6% quarter-on-quarter contraction in Japan.