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UK Powerhouse

Our quarterly economic growth report charting the regional effects of economic policy for businesses across the UK

Key Findings Q2 2018 and Brexit

GDP growth picks up in Q2

The UK economy grew by 0.4% in Q2 2018 and 1.2% in the year to Q2 2018. Services sector performed well, with retail sales increasing from the World Cup and good weather.

Strong labour market continues

Employment rate remains at 75.6% in Q2, still the highest since records began in 1971. Unemployment rate was 4.0% on average across the country in Q2 2018.

GVA leaders

Reading, Milton Keynes and Cambridge saw the fastest Gross Value Added (GVA) growth rate in Q2. Across the cities we looked at, GVA growth was an average of 2.1%.


Despite Brexit uncertainty, Cambridge is set to have the highest GVA growth in Q2 2019 out of the 46 cities in our report.

Impact on farming

UK farming and agribusinesses may lose subsidies from EU’s Common Agriculture Policy (CAP) following Brexit.

FDI decrease

Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) may decrease in the short-term while investors wait to see how the UK economy adapts to leaving the EU.

Beyond the EU

The UK service sector can adapt to Brexit quickly if it makes use of global links outside the EU.

Manchester and Leeds

Both cities could provide opportunities for growth in the knowledge intensive business service sector after Brexit. Their diverse economies make them more adaptable to economic change.

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