The UK economy’s growth slowed down over August to just 2.1%.
City forecasts were expecting a 4.4% growth despite the government’s efforts through the Eat Out to Help Out scheme.
According to the Office for National Statistics, the new figure means that Britain’s Gross Domestic Product through August was 9.2% lower than it was during pre-pandemic levels in March.
Jonathan Athow, the ONS deputy national statistician for economic statistics, said: “The economy continued to recover in August but by less than in recent months.
“There was strong growth in restaurants and accommodation due to the easing of lockdown rules, the Eat Out to Help Out scheme and people choosing summer ‘staycations’. However, many other parts of the service sector recorded muted growth.”
UK chancellor Rishi Sunak commented on the latest data, saying: “Today’s figures show our economy has grown for 4 consecutive months, but I know that many people are worried about the coming winter months.
“Throughout this crisis, my single-focus has been jobs – protecting as many jobs as possible, and providing support for people to find other opportunities where this isn’t possible. This goal remains unchanged.
“That’s why we’re investing billions to help people back to work and provide fresh opportunities to those that have sadly lost their jobs so that nobody is left without hope,” he added.
Other key economic sectors also grew at slower rates. Services grew by 2.4%, production grew by just 0.3%, and manufacturing and construction grew by 0.7% and 3%.