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ONS reports 0.5 per cent UK economic growth for first quarter

Figures suggest Bank of England's interest rates will remain unchanged.

In its third projection, the Office for National Statistics reported that the UK economy expanded by 0.5 per cent in the first quarter of 2011.

The growth was offset by a 0.6 per cent fall in consumer spending during the same time period. This is the greatest decrease since the second quarter of 2009.

In this third estimate, construction output was revised upwards while manufacturing was revised downward.

Investec analyst Philip Shaw said, "There is nothing that is too surprising [in these figures]."

Shaw believes economic issues outside the UK are currently the most important factors regarding the state's economic future.

He expressed the importance of ensuring that Greece's financial crisis is "sorted out in an orderly manner" and the necessity of an increase in US economic growth.

Shaw said these figures from the ONS suggest the Bank of England's interest rates will remain at 0.5 per cent for the time being.