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United Kingdom: Signs of life
United Kingdom: Signs of life
GDP: -0.7%
Inflation: 1.6%
Unemployment: 7.9%
Markets: 32.6%
Interest rate: 0.5%

The United Kingdom hasn't officially emerged from the recession, but the country has shown signs that it is starting to break away from its slump.

Great Britain's services sector grew in August at the fastest pace in almost two years. Factory output has started to rebound after massive declines throughout the downturn. And the latest business and consumer confidence surveys showed slight improvement.

Economists also say Britain has avoided the threat of massive deflation by keeping the printing presses on around the clock. The Bank of England has printed $290 billion in an attempt to jumpstart the economy.

As a result, Mervyn King, the governor of the Bank of England, told Parliament this week that the recession may soon be over.

Still, Prime Minister Gordon Brown has said that he plans to continue the nation's stimulus efforts at least through next year. That may be necessary, given last month's unemployment figures jumped to their highest levels since 1995.

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Last updated September 24 2009: 11:03 AM ET
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Source: IMF, national statistics offices, central banks, FTSE 100
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