There were fresh fears of a double-dip recession today as the Bank of England revealed an alarming new statistic on the UK economy. In response, the governor of the Bank of England, Mervyn King, announced a sideways revision of its long-term growth predictions.
Chancellor George Osborne welcomed the statistic. "Taking into account the crisis of the euro and the depression in retail sales, this statistic is a welcome vote of confidence in this government's austerity plans. That said, it is also a chilling reminder of the shambles the previous government left the public accounts in."
Speaking for the opposition, Ed Milliband said the statistic was a sure sign of the damage coalition cuts were doing. "What more evidence do we need that the chancellor's plan simply isn't working? This statistic is bad news for hard working families across Britain and bad news for unemployed young people."
Markets reacted badly to the news, with sharp falls in mid-to-late-morning trading. A spokesperson from analysts Antsy said institutional investors as well as smaller traders had shown predictable cowardice in the face of the statistic. "The days of Bull and Bear markets are gone. The reality is that we're experiencing what's known as a Startled Deer market."