Economic recovery set to be just short of pre-recession peak

Official figures released this week are expected to show the UK economy is just short of the peak we saw before the recession.

The Office for National Statistics is likely to say the economy grew by 0.9% in the first quarter of this year, compared to 0.7% in the previous quarter, economists are predicting.

Meanwhile the CBI has said the economic outlook is “exceptionally strong”.

In a monthly survey of 675 firms, the CBI found growth expectations were the best since it started collecting data in 2003.

The CBI’s chief policy director Katja Hall said: “These latest growth figures, and the strong expectations for the next quarter, provide further encouraging signs of increasing vigour and confidence across the UK economy.

“While consumer spending accounted for the lion’s share of GDP growth last year, there are firm indications of growth becoming more broad-based.”

The CBI is expecting growth to strengthen in 2014, underpinned partly by rising business and consumer confidence and supportive monetary conditions, it said.

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