UK economy suffers shock 0.3% contraction

The UK economy shrank by 0.3% in April, according to figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), as the cost of living crisis deepened.

The fall comes after a 0.1% decline in March and is despite several City economists predicted growth of 0.1%.

The ONS director of economic statistics, Darren Morgan, said the sharp dip was down to a fall in health sector activity

He added: “A big drop in the health sector due to the winding down of the test and trace scheme pushed the UK economy into negative territory in April.

“Manufacturing also suffered with some companies telling us they were being affected by rising fuel and energy prices.

“These were partially offset by growth in car sales, which recovered from a significantly weaker than usual March.”

Maria Hanson MBE, founder of the Derby-based charity, me&dee: “Donations, like the economy, are grinding to a halt. Recently we have lost five of our regular monthly supporters. This is our only set income, and therefore a massive concern. Our number of applications have doubled and we do not have double the

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