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Recession fears continue with services slump

ONS releases gloomy October figures

Activity in Britain's services sector dropped in October at the fastest pace since April, according to new data from the Office of National Statistics.

The seasonally adjusted index of services dropped by 0.7 per cent in October compared with the previous month, the ONS said today. The drop took the three-monthly rate of growth down to 0.2 per cent.

The statistics indicate contraction of the economy in the final quarter and highlight the danger of recession.

Major drags on services output were telecommunications, computer programming and financial services, said the ONS.

The worrying figures follow statistics indicating that industrial output also fell at the sharpest pace in six months in October, raising the chances that Britain has already entered recession.