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UK economy returns to pre-recession levels

UK economy returns to pre-recession levels

The UK's economy has returned to pre-crash levels, six years after the financial crisis plunged it into recession.

GDP increased by 0.8% in the second quarter of 2014, and was up 3.1% on the same quarter last year. It is now 0.2% ahead of its pre-crisis peak in early 2008.

The latest figures, from the Office for National Statistics, represent further good economic news for the Government following yesterday's IMF forecast predicting the UK economy will grow by 3.2% in 2014, more than any other G7 nation.

George Osborne hailed the news as “a major milestone” but warned that the there was still more to do to secure long-term prosperity.

The Chancellor said: “It is thanks to the hard work of the British people that today we reach a major milestone in our long term economic plan.

“But there is still a long way to go because the great recession was one of the deepest in the world and cost Britain six years, and let us resolve not to repeat the mistakes of the past but to go on working through an economic plan that is delivering economic security and a brighter future for all.”

David Cameron echoed his sentiments telling BBC radio London the figures were “good news”.  

The Prime Minister said: “After all the hard work of the British people the economy is now bigger than it was before the crash in 2008, and that's a credit to people's hard work.“

However, Ed Miliband dismissed the figures, saying the country still faced “big problems”.

Ed Balls accused the Chancellor of being out of touch because, he said, many people were still experiencing cost of living pressures.

The Shadow Chancellor told BBC News: “I think for people up and down the country…they will be listening to the Conservative Chancellor saying, ‘the economy is fixed, that’s all fine’ and most people will be saying ‘hang on a sec, in my life things are still getting harder, my wages still aren’t keeping pace with prices’ - people are still really under pressure with the cost of living.”

The Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg was keen to take credit for the improvement telling Sky News: "I think it’s incredibly important that we say loud and clear...we have rescued the British economy, it is now as big if not slightly bigger than where it was before that terrible crash of 2008."

Green Box: UK economy returns to pre-recession levelsClick to open

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