Britain's economy definitely in recession

Britain's astounding economic run--no recession since 1991--is inarguably at an end:

Britain fell deeper into recession during the final three months of last year as the economy contracted by 1.5 per cent, according to new figures released on Friday.

The rapid decline in UK economic growth in the fourth quarter of 2008 was the worst performance since the second quarter of 1980, when the country was in the middle of steep downturn, and confirmed the economy grew at its slowest annual pace for sixteen years.

Fourth quarter growth was weaker than the 1.2 per cent decline economists on average had been expecting and follows a 0.6 per cent contraction in the third quarter. For the whole of 2008 growth was just 0.7 per cent.