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According to James Smith, Developed Markets Economist at ING, there’s little doubt growth has stepped up a gear over the summer, helped along  by better weather.

Key Quotes

“Growth remained unchanged in August, but that follows what was  a pretty chunky 0.4% increase in July. This points to a decent overall third-quarter GDP reading in the 0.5/0.6% region, but with the sunny weather now largely behind us, the question is whether the economy can sustain this better performance.”

“We think growth will face a number of challenges over the next few months.”

“Firstly, of course, there’s Brexit.”

“The combination of greater uncertainty and the fact that real incomes are again being squeezed by the near-10% rise in petrol prices since March indicates the high street faces another challenging period.”

“With that in mind, we think there’s a risk that economic momentum slows again over the autumn and winter, which in turn  means the Bank of England is unlikely to hike rates again before May 2019.”