August 13, 2020 at 6:03 AM EDT
Britain plunges into deep recession, with steep job losses and Europe’s highest virus death toll
LONDON — The official numbers were published Wednesday, and they are officially ugly. The British economy has plunged into a record-shattering recession, shrinking by a fifth in the second quarter and posting the steepest decline of any Group of Seven nation.
Alongside huge job losses announced a day earlier, Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Britain now finds itself with the worst economy and highest number of excess deaths from the novel coronavirus in Europe.
The official data released Wednesday by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed that gross domestic product (GDP) fell 20.4 percent in the second quarter — April, May and June — compared with the first quarter. The downturn reflected losses across all sectors, after the country went into a tight lockdown in the third week of March.
By Karla Adam and William Booth