Consumer spending helped boost the UK’s total output (GDP) in the third quarter of 2017.
Household spending grew by 0.6% between Q2 and Q3, recovering from a lower growth of 0.2% between Q1 and Q2, according to revised figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
The increase over the first three quarters of 2017 was partly driven by changes in the timing of car purchases following increases in Vehicle Excise Duty on high-polluting vehicles, which came into force in April 2017.
These changes led consumers to bring forward planned new car purchases, leading to a decline in Q2. Since then there has been a modest recovery in expenditure on transport, including cars, into Q3.
Services up 0.4%
Services industries drove growth in the output measure of GDP in Q3, increasing by 0.4%, unrevised from the preliminary estimate of GDP.
Growth was recorded in three out of four sub-sectors between Q2 and Q3 2017, with transport, storage and communications remaining flat with zero growth. The largest contribution to quarterly GDP growth was from business services and finance, which contributed 0.2 percentage points
Production output up 1.1%
Production output was estimated to have increased by 1.1% between Q2 and Q3 2017, revised up by 0.1 percentage points from the preliminary estimate. Growth was broad-based, with all four sub-sectors seeing positive growth in Q3. Mining and quarrying, including oil and gas extraction, increased by 2.1%, while electricity, gas and manufacturing all increased by 1.1%. Water supply industries increased by 0.7%.
Construction down 0.9%
Construction output dropped 0.9% in Q3, revised downwards from a fall of 0.7% in the preliminary estimate. This marks the second consecutive quarter with falling growth after a sustained period of positive growth in all quarters since Q4 2015.
Agriculture up 0.2%
Agriculture, the smallest proportion of total output, increased 0.2% in Q3, revised down by 0.8 percentage points. New data for the period has driven this revision.