'Brexit is already hurting the UK economy and crashing out of the European Union with no deal risks a recession, the government’s own independent official forecaster has concluded.
“We cannot know for sure what would have happened had the vote gone the other way, but it seems likely that the economy and public finances have been weaker than they otherwise would have been,” said the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) in a new report published on Thursday.
The Bank of England and some independent analysts, including the Centre for European Reform, have suggested that the Leave result has held back UK GDP growth by between 2 and 2.5 per cent relative to where it otherwise would have been due to lower household spending, resulting from the spike in inflation after the vote, and lower business investment due to Brexit-related uncertainty.
That equates to a GDP loss of up to £500m a week, more than what Brexit campaigners said, misleadingly, would be the benefit to UK tax revenues from no longer paying into the EU budget.
The OBR described these calculations as plausible and in line with its own estimates, noting that the UK had slipped from having the highest growth rate in the G7 before the vote, to the lowest now.'
Read more: Brexit already hurting UK economy and no-deal risks recession, says Office for Budget Responsibility
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