GDP data shows Britain's economy can cope with EU exit - Hammond

Britain's Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond speaks at the Conservative Party conference in Birmingham, Britain October 3, 2016. REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Photo

LONDON (Reuters) - Chancellor Philip Hammond said that Thursday’s better-than-expected GDP growth showed the economy was resilient and well-placed to cope with the challenges thrown up by Britain’s exit from the European Union.

Gross domestic product expanded by 0.5 percent in the July-September period, less rapid than the unusually strong growth of 0.7 percent seen in the second quarter but comfortably above a median forecast of 0.3 percent in a Reuters poll of economists.

“The fundamentals of the UK economy are strong, and today’s data show that the economy is resilient,” Hammond said in a statement released after the news.

“The economy will need to adjust to a new relationship with the EU, but we are well-placed to deal with the challenges and take advantage of opportunities ahead.”

Reporting by Kate Holton; writing by William James; editing by Costas Pitas