U.K. trade figures fail to offer any hope

Although the U.K.'s trade deficit in goods narrowed to £9.2 billion in November from £9.5 billion the previous month, the slim improvement suggested that the export sector isn't likely to provide any support for the nation's teetering economy any time soon, analysts said. "Without a marked turnaround in December, net trade looks like it may well drag on GDP growth in the final quarter of the year. But prospects for such a turnaround are slim," said Martin Beck, U.K. economist at Capital Economics.

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