Warmer weather helped the British economy grow at a faster pace in the three months to the end of June, despite official figures revealing the manufacturing sector slumped into recession for the first time since the Brexit vote.

The Office for National Statistics said GDP increased by 0.4% in the second quarter from a rate of 0.2% in the previous three months, helped by stronger retail sales and good weather enabling the construction industry to make-up lost ground from the heavy snow earlier this year.

The better news for the economy comes after the Bank of England lifted interest rates to 0.75% last week, their highest level since the financial crisis a decade ago.

Philip Hammond, the chancellor, said: “We are working hard to build a stronger, fairer economy – dealing with the deficit, helping people into work, and cutting taxes for individuals and businesses.”

Service industries experienced robust growth of 0.5% in the second quarter, with the retail and wholesale sectors providing the strongest contribution, helped by the warm weather tempting shoppers back to the high street.

However, the latest snapshot from the ONS painted an increasingly lopsided picture for economic growth, with Britain reliant on the services sector amid a downturn for factory output. There were also indications of slowing growth in June, with the ONS revealing May was the strongest month of the second quarter.



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