GDP growth stronger than predicted but 'squeeze' continuing

UK GDP: Britain's economy grew by 0.4% in the last quarter - live updates

The U.K.'s economy grew unexpectedly in 2017's third quarter, according to data revealed on Wednesday by the country's Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The news will offer some relief in an economy which has suffered a slow 2017 so far, after quarterly growth remained flat at 0.3 per cent in the first half of the year.

'While the services sector was the largest contributor to GDP growth in Q3, the latest data confirms that activity in the sector remains muted, with growth unchanged from the previous quarter.

The U.K. economy grew by 0.4 percent in the third quarter of this year, beating market estimates, and potentially boosting the chances of a rate hike by the Bank of England.

"If all we can muster, in terms of a payoff, is an acceleration in economic growth that's so small you could blink and miss it, the Bank of England could still think better of a rate rise next week".

Sterling shot up following the release, rising more than 0.3% against both the USA dollar and the euro to 1.317 and 1.119, respectively.

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We would urge the MPC to proceed with caution on raising rates, as tightening monetary policy amid the current economic and political uncertainty could weaken growth.

Inflation in the United Kingdom has jumped to a five-and-a-half year high at 3%, while wage growth remains subdued.

"With retail sales in September falling, inflation rising to its highest level for five years and unemployment at a record low, if the MPC doesn't raise interest rates now, many will begin to question if it will ever do so".

In response to the figures Chancellor Phillip Hammond said: "The UK economy is successful and resilient".

With the year-on-year GDP figure coming in at 1.5%, all indications suggest the Bank of England is likely to increase base rates by 25bps at its November meeting. A 25 basis point increase merely reverses last year's cut - which was arguably unnecessary - and returns rates to where they've been for the entire post-crisis period.

But the United Kingdom is still languishing well below the 0.6 per cent registered by the eurozone in the second quarter.

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