The UK economy has exited from recession but the recovery is going to be fragile for awhile with the growth figure for the last quarter weaker than expected.
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The economy grew by 0.1% in the last three months of 2009 ending six months of contractions according to figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS).
The UK economy has lagged behind continental rivals Germany and France, which both exited their recessions last summer, but government ministers had been predicting an official end to the recession for sometime.
In its preliminary estimate for Q4 the ONS pointed to increases in "distribution, hotels and restaurants" as contributing factors to the growth.
"Government and other services and total production also had significant contributions to the increase. This was partially offset by a small decrease in business services and finance. Construction and transport, storage and communication were flat over the quarter," stated the ONS report.
The response to the 0.1% was downbeat from the financial analyst community with most reports taking the line that the recession had ended but only just.