The prime minister can back up his claim with data published by Britain’s Office for National Statistics (ONS) on Friday, which showed the United Kingdom had the fastest growing economy of the Group of Seven nations over last year as a whole.
UK gross domestic product — the broadest measure of economic activity — grew by 7.5% as activity bounced back with the lifting of coronavirus restrictions.
But those figures don’t tell the whole story. The growth numbers are pumped up because the United Kingdom endured the deepest recession of any major developed economy in 2020 and its worst performance since 1921, providing a lower base for subsequent comparison.
Johnson’s boast also doesn’t reflect what happened in the final three months of last year. UK GDP expanded 1% in the fourth quarter, according to ONS data published Friday. That trailed the United States (1.7%) and Canada (1.6%), which are both in the G7.
Even those statistics…