After suffering a record fall of 5.8% in March, when the UK lockdown was first announced, the latest government figures show that UK GDP growth fell by 20.4% in April when the lockdown was in full effect.
The fall was of a different magnitude to anything previously experienced by the UK economy. No sector was left unscathed with the UK in lockdown. The worst casualty was air transport which shrank almost 93%. It was closely followed by the accommodation and food services sector which shrivelled 88% on the month contributing to an almost 20% fall in the services sector overall – which accounts for around 80% of the UK’s economy. The construction sector shrank by 40% while manufacturing output fell by a quarter.
The figures put the UK on course to meet the Bank of England forecast of a 25% fall in UK GDP in the second quarter triggering what it has described as the deepest recession for more than 300 years.