Britain slides back
BRITAIN was back in recession Wednesday after its economy shrank in the first quarter while Prime Minister David Cameron said the country was being buffeted by the European downturn.
Gross domestic product fell 0.2 percent between January and March, after a 0.3-percent drop in the fourth quarter of 2011, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said in a statement.
That technically placed Britain in recession, which is defined as two successive quarters of contraction, amid a broader downturn that appears to be taking hold across Europe and notably in members of the eurozone. “We are in a difficult economic situation in Britain,” Cameron said in reaction to the data, adding that he stood by government spending cuts despite worries that they undermined growth.
“Just as you see now recessions in Denmark, in Holland, in Italy, in Spain, that is what is happening in the continent that we trade with.
What is absolutely essential is we take every step we can to help our economy out of recession,” Cameron told parliament. Britain, which is not a member of the eurozone, clawed its way out of a record-length recession in the third quarter of 2009 caused by the global financial crisis.