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Britain's GDP growth slows in third quarter

Latest figures show that the rate of growth of the UK economy slowed slightly in the third quarter, according to official figures, as manufacturing expansion eased and growth in the services industry cooled.

Britain's gross domestic product (GDP) expanded by 0.7 percent in the three months to September from the previous quarter, the Official for National Statistics said on Friday. Year-on-year, the economy grew 3 percent, with both figures meeting analyst expectations.

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Simon Dawson | Bloomberg via Getty Images

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Slowing services growth

The latest U.K. figures show that growth in the services sector - which contributed the most to the economic expansion - slowed the most in the third quarter, dropping from 1.1 percent to 0.7 percent, quarter-on-quarter.

Construction output grew, however, expanding by 0.8 percent over the period, up from 0.7 percent in the previous quarter, as the booming U.K. property market continued to provide support for home builders.

"This provisional estimate of third quarter growth is likely to be revised higher in coming months, possibly to 0.9%, which is in line with the calculations from the Bank of England and reflects upbeat business survey data," Chris Williamson, chief economist as Markit said.

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"The latest estimate of the health of the economy will do little to change the outlook for interest rates," he added. "The UK remains vulnerable to weaker global economic growth, and sterling's appreciation since the start of the year poses a threat to export performance,"

Even with the minor slowdown, Britain is set to be the fastest-growing large advanced economy this year, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

In its latest review of the global economy released earlier this month, the IMF predicted that the U.K. would grow by 3.2 percent in 2014 and 2.7 percent in 2015.