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March 15, 2010    

BoE’s Kate Barker says UK unlikely to return to recession

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by Kay Murchie

Bank of England policymaker, Kate Barker, said the UK is unlikely to return to recession.

In an interview over the weekend, Ms Barker, who is a former housing adviser to the Government, said it is possible, however, that the economy could contract for one quarter.

“It’s possible we will have a quarter when GDP falls, but I don’t think it will be a double dip. I would be surprised if we go back to recession but I think recovery will be bumpy and fragile,” she said.

The UK economy emerged from recession in the fourth quarter of 2009 by experiencing growth of just 0.3%.

All economists and reports have suggested that the recovery will be fragile, while some have expressed concern for a double-dip recession (whereby the economy goes into recession twice without having undergone a full recovery in between).

However, Ms Barker told Saturday’s Western Morning News the big freeze earlier this year hit retail sales but February’s business surveys had painted a more positive picture of the economy.

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