Britain is already in recession: Report

October 7th, 2008 - 2:21 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Oct 7 (DPA) Britain is already in a “worsening recession” and is facing the dual threat of slowing growth and rising unemployment, a survey of 5,000 companies by the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) said Tuesday.The report said sales and profits had plummeted over the summer amid a worsening economic outlook and the prospect of rising unemployment as confidence had “collapsed” across all sectors of the industry.

The business association said it was clear that Britain was in a “worsening” recession and urged the government and the Bank of England to take urgent action to avoid a “major” recession.

It urged the central bank to cut interest rates by 0.5 percent this week, while the government was told to slash business taxes.

The report warned that unemployment was expected to increase by between 300,000 and 350,000 over the next two years, which would take the total over two million.

“The alarming results point to worsening dangers of major economic downturn and rising unemployment. The results support the view that a UK recession has started and the downturn is getting worse. The domestic economy is under immense pressure,” said David Kern, the BCC’s economic advisor.

The Bank of England is due to announce an interest rate decision Thursday amid speculation that rates could be cut from the current five percent to stimulate the economy amid ongoing turmoil.

Both the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the European Union (EU) have said that Britain will enter a recession this autumn.

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