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UK economy closed pandemic gap in November

LONDON — The British economy exceeded its pre-pandemic size in November 2021, figures published today by the Office for National Statistics show.

Gross domestic product increased by 0.9 percent in November and stood at 0.7 percent above the previous peak of February 2020.

“The economy grew strongly in the month before Omicron struck with architects, retailers, couriers and accountants having a bumper month,” said ONS chief economist Grant Fitzner, adding that construction also ticked up thanks to wider availability of raw material.

The growth spurt took financial markets by surprise and suggests the country was in decent shape when the Omicron wave hit, through which it stayed open with the exception of a government recommendation to work from home where possible. The pound sterling gained value against the U.S. dollar and euro in trading immediately after the news.

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