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Economy grew more than previously thought, claims ONS

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revised its previous figures regarding the UK economy in 2012, showing it grew more than previously thought.

Reported by bbc.co.uk, the body changed its growth estimate from no growth up to 0.2 per cent.

The revisions involved changing figures attributed to two quarters last year. The first quarter was lifted from a 0.2 per cent contraction to a 0.1 per cent contraction while growth in the third quarter was upgraded from 0.9 per cent to 1.0 per cent.

Sky.com suggests the revisions will prove to be a boost to Chancellor George Osborne ahead of his Budget next month.

The high figure seen in the third quarter was mainly down to the Olympic 2012 Games, with tickets sales being assumed to have taken place in the three-month period. In addition, growth in the fourth quarter 2012 compared with 2011 was revised up from zero to 0.3 per cent.

However, that is not to say the UK has escaped from an uncertain future. Economists believe the 'continued and deepening squeeze' on consumer spending - due to low wage growth and rising prices - is one of the greatest risks.

Chris Williamson, representative of Markit, commented on the figures: "The outlook for the rest of the year is therefore one of very modest economic growth at best with ongoing, heightening risks of another slide back into contraction."

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