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Gloomy outlook predicted by cebr expert

Job losses will leave the economy "stagnant" this year, an economist has suggested.Charles Davis at the Centre for Economic and Business Research (cebr) said that unemployment would become "increasingly pervasive" in the UK, putting downwards pressure on growth.The expert also suggested that output would fall across the year.This is consistent with the government's own forecast, which predicts a one per cent contraction of the economy for 2009.Most analysts predict a rise in unemployment - with latest figures showing that the number of people out of work has recently hit an eight-year high of 1.86 million.Mr Davis said: "We will be continuing with rising unemployment; unemployment is an increasingly pervasive thing across society unfortunately as businesses struggle with their bottom line and have these difficult decisions [to make]. "We'll probably see in the fourth quarter of 2008 there to be no growth and the contraction will probably be larger than the contraction we saw in quarter three and we expect a basically stagnant 2009, with output falling overall over the year and unemployment rising."

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