Responding to the latest official GDP statistics for the UK, showing growth in Q4 fell to 0.2%, Tej Parikh, Senior Economist at the Institute of Directors, said:
“The UK economy lost its summer exuberance in the final months of 2018, and there are signs of further chill winds ahead.
“The ongoing uncertainty around what happens after 29th March is the prime suspect behind sapped economic activity. There is currently a drag on growth as some businesses are forced to hold back on major investments and engage in cautionary stockpiling.
“The first half of 2019 will bring further challenges for the UK economy. China’s slowdown and weak growth in Europe are likely to bite at British exporters. At the same time, while consumers have shown resilience so far, many are becoming increasingly cautious with their wallets.
“The clock is ticking, but if a Brexit deal can be agreed, things should start to look sunnier as pent-up demand is released and firms begin investing again.”