Britain's economy slowed more than previously thought in the first three months of 2017 as rising inflation boosted by last year's Brexit vote took a toll on household spending. As David Pollard reports, the official figures were released two weeks before Brits got to the polls to elect a new government
Britain pauses to remember. 22 dead in Monday's bomb blast. If, even as it does so, thoughts turn back to an election in a fortnight's time. UKIP the first to restart its campaign after the Manchester attack. The two biggest parties to do so on Friday. (SOUNDBITE) (English) BRITAIN'S PRIME MINISTER, THERESA MAY, SAYING: "The threat level, as assessed by the independent Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre, will remain at critical ..." For Theresa May, tough talk on terror - and a reality check on the economy. A data revision shows Q1 growth even lower than first thought - just 0.2 per cent quarter on quarter. The main growth driver, the consumer, is sagging under inflation. And while Brexit pushes up prices through a weaker pound, other drivers are hard to spot. SOUNDBITE (English) CHIEF ECONOMIST, WORLD FIRST, JEREMY COOK, SAYING: "Investment may also be postponed as we wait to see just what kind of relationship the UK is going to have with the single market moving forward. The export numbers were particularly poor in Q1. So you'd have to say that while we may not be seeing recession, it doesn't look rosy." Real drivers in focus too on news that UK car production was down 18 per cent in April - perhaps due to a later Easter. In the political race, though, investors still see Theresa May's hand firmly on the wheel. Despite a recent poll surge from the opposition. SOUNDBITE (English) CHIEF ECONOMIST, WORLD FIRST, JEREMY COOK, SAYING: "Before the attacks in Manchester there was a little bit of a narrative coming out that Labour, the Labour Party, started to have a little bit of momentum. To be honest investors are still almost fully priced for a 100, 110 seat Tory majority, come come June the 9th." As for the economy, it was a top performer in 2016. For 2017: not in the slow lane yet - but the warning lights are flashing.