UK recession risk up to 30%, survey says


LONDON • There’s almost a one-in three chance of a UK recession in the 12 months, according to a Bloomberg survey of economists.

The probability of two consecutive quarters of negative growth has increased to 30%, the highest since the end of 2016, the survey of 10 economists found. That’s up from 25% a month ago. It was at 20% or lower for all of 2018.

The survey was conducted on Feb 1-6, before the Bank of England (BoE) published new forecasts that see the slowest economic growth in a decade in 2019 and a slightly greater than 20% chance of a recession. Governor Mark Carney told a press conference that a no-deal Brexit would increase the probability of a contraction.

Economists put the chances of a recession at almost 50% in the immediate aftermath of 2016’s Brexit vote, but the economy continued to expand. There hasn’t been a quarterly contraction since 2012.

BoE policymakers will explain their outlook at events in London this week. Carney discusses risks to the global economy in a speech tomorrow, while external Monetary Policy Committee member Gertjan Vlieghe will give his thoughts about the UK on Thursday. — Bloomberg