By Bob Northgate
The UK economy grew by 1.1% in the second quarter, an unexpected rise from the 0.3% growth seen during the first
three months of the year.
The figure represents the most rapid growth seen in over four years, with the 1.1% leap between April and June nearly double the 0.6% growth expected by most analysts.
The UK has now seen economic growth for three consecutive quarters.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said that the services sector had been responsible for the majority of the growth, and there was also a contribution from the construction industry, which grew at the fastest rate seen in 47 years with a 6.6% rise.
The growth could be short-lived as Chancellor George Osborne's emergency Budget comes into play, and the UK sees far-ranging spending cuts. Mr. Osborne has said that the task is 'not yet done' in rebuilding the UK's economy.
Howard Archer, economist at IHS Global Insight, said: 'There is a very real risk that the second quarter will be as good as it gets for the economy for the time being'.
'Going forward, we expect growth to be relatively muted and bumpy in the face of serious headwinds, including major fiscal tightening increasingly starting to impact, the euro zone's problems and pressure on consumers coming from high unemployment, muted wage growth and high debt levels'.
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