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The UK economy - statistics & facts

The gross domestic product of the British economy was 1.96 trillion British pounds in 2020, making it the sixth largest global economy, behind the United States, China, Japan, Germany, and India. In 2020, the UK economy shrank by a record 9.9 percent, due to the economic fallout of the Coronavirus pandemic. This itself, followed the rather sluggish growth rate of 1.4 percent in 2019, with growth possibly curtailed by the economic uncertainty and political turmoil surrounding Brexit in that year. While the victory of Boris Johnson in the 2019 general election ended some of the political uncertainty regarding Brexit, there were far more severe and unforeseen economic headwinds to come in 2020.

Coronavirus devastates UK economy in 2020

On January 31, 2020 the UK formally left the European Union and entered an 11 month transition period, in which the two sides had to negotiate a new political and economic relationship. This timeline, which was already ambitious, was cast into further doubt by the arrival of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, with the UK's first cases recorded on the same day it left the EU. By the middle of March 2020, the pandemic had forced the simultaneous lockdown of most European countries. Although the UK government moved swiftly to mitigate the economic devastation of the virus, by furloughing workers and protecting the incomes of the self-employed, it's handling of the public health crisis was much less assured, and the country suffered a very high number of deaths in the initial wave as a result. In April the GDP of the UK fell by 18.3 percent, the biggest monthly fall in GDP ever recorded. Unemployment claims, which numbered 1.23 million prior to the pandemic increased to 2.62 million by May. As Summer arrived, there were estimated to be just 343 thousand job vacancies, compared with 796 thousand before lockdown measures started. With cases falling, some parts of the UK economy began to open up, with the government providing aid to the ailing restaurant industry through the 'Eat out to Help Out' scheme.

Light at the end of the tunnel in 2021?

The end of summer coincided with the arrival of the second wave of the pandemic just as the government's trade negotiations with the European Union began to enter troubled waters. Although an agreement was eventually reached and ratified just before the end of the transition period, the arrangement has left the UK economically isolated from the rest of the continent. Due to this, and the fact the UK was badly hit by the pandemic, means that UK economy will return to growth slower than many other European countries. Despite these forecasts, it is also possible that the UK's successful vaccination rollout may provide an early boost to the economy, provided key parts of the economy can reopen sooner rather than later.

Key figures

The most important key figures provide you with a compact summary of the topic of "The UK economy" and take you straight to the corresponding statistics.

GDP

Labor market

Forecasts for 2021

Interesting statistics

In the following 5 chapters, you will quickly find the 46 most important statistics relating to "The UK economy".

Economy of the UK

Dossier on the topic

All important statistics are prepared by our experts – available for direct download as PPT & PDF!
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The UK economy - statistics & facts

The gross domestic product of the British economy was 1.96 trillion British pounds in 2020, making it the sixth largest global economy, behind the United States, China, Japan, Germany, and India. In 2020, the UK economy shrank by a record 9.9 percent, due to the economic fallout of the Coronavirus pandemic. This itself, followed the rather sluggish growth rate of 1.4 percent in 2019, with growth possibly curtailed by the economic uncertainty and political turmoil surrounding Brexit in that year. While the victory of Boris Johnson in the 2019 general election ended some of the political uncertainty regarding Brexit, there were far more severe and unforeseen economic headwinds to come in 2020.

Coronavirus devastates UK economy in 2020

On January 31, 2020 the UK formally left the European Union and entered an 11 month transition period, in which the two sides had to negotiate a new political and economic relationship. This timeline, which was already ambitious, was cast into further doubt by the arrival of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, with the UK's first cases recorded on the same day it left the EU. By the middle of March 2020, the pandemic had forced the simultaneous lockdown of most European countries. Although the UK government moved swiftly to mitigate the economic devastation of the virus, by furloughing workers and protecting the incomes of the self-employed, it's handling of the public health crisis was much less assured, and the country suffered a very high number of deaths in the initial wave as a result. In April the GDP of the UK fell by 18.3 percent, the biggest monthly fall in GDP ever recorded. Unemployment claims, which numbered 1.23 million prior to the pandemic increased to 2.62 million by May. As Summer arrived, there were estimated to be just 343 thousand job vacancies, compared with 796 thousand before lockdown measures started. With cases falling, some parts of the UK economy began to open up, with the government providing aid to the ailing restaurant industry through the 'Eat out to Help Out' scheme.

Light at the end of the tunnel in 2021?

The end of summer coincided with the arrival of the second wave of the pandemic just as the government's trade negotiations with the European Union began to enter troubled waters. Although an agreement was eventually reached and ratified just before the end of the transition period, the arrangement has left the UK economically isolated from the rest of the continent. Due to this, and the fact the UK was badly hit by the pandemic, means that UK economy will return to growth slower than many other European countries. Despite these forecasts, it is also possible that the UK's successful vaccination rollout may provide an early boost to the economy, provided key parts of the economy can reopen sooner rather than later.

Interesting statistics

In the following 5 chapters, you will quickly find the 46 most important statistics relating to "The UK economy".

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