BRITAIN’S booming economy has defied the Brexit doom-mongers by once again exceeding expectations. Growth in the fourth quarter of last year was 0.5 per cent, official figures revealed yesterday.
That is up from 0.4 per cent in the previous three months and far higher than economists had predicted.
The Office for National Statistics figures also show output as a whole rose last year by around 1.8 per cent.
That is more than the 1.5 per cent the Office for Budget Responsibility predicted only two months ago.
Growth is also significantly outstripping the Treasury’s Project Fear warnings in 2016 about the immediate impact of a referendum vote to leave the European Union.
In May that year the department said that if the British people voted for Brexit it could push the economy into immediate recession and growth would still be zero by the last three months of 2017.
Even Bank of England governor Mark Carney, a leading Remainer, conceded yesterday that Britain could now catch up with the rest of the world after suffering a “short-term” hit following the Brexit vote.
Sterling rose yesterday against the dollar and the euro.
Ben Brettell, of Bristol-based investment firm Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “The economy has performed much better than many feared in the aftermath of the Brexit vote, boosted by the rising tide of a global recovery which has lifted all boats.”
Professor Patrick Minford, chairman of the pro-Brexit Economists for Free Trade, said: “These latest figures go to show that Project Fear was completely wrong then, and Remainers are wrong now. The British economy has thrived.”
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