According to official figures, Britain's economic growth slowed in the third quarter as GDP edged closer to pre-pandemic levels.
The pound fell below $1.34 to hit its lowest level against the US dollar since December after gross domestic product GDP increased by a slightly weaker than expected, down from 5.5% in the second quarter.
In September, the GDP was just 0.6% shy of its level in February 2020, before the epidemic struck, according to a monthly breakdown of the data from the Office for National Statistics ONS.
The economy was 2.1% smaller than at the end of the year, while the US is back above pre-pandemic levels, while the US is already back above pre-pandemic levels.
The UK's dominant sector of services was held back by weak consumer spending for the quarter as a whole, with a number of months of decline in retail sales.
The reopening of the economy helped sub sectors, such as hotels and restaurants, up 30%, and art and entertainment which grew by 19.6%, as a result of easing restrictions and the reopening of the economy.
The household spending increased by 2% but was still 4.4% lower than at the end of the year.
The chief UK economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, Samuel Tombs, said consumers still aren't willing to spend a normal share of their incomes due to public caution amid high COVID case numbers and the end of much of the government s pandemic-era support over the period.
Car factories were hit by a global shortage of semiconductor chips and construction which saw higher input prices and delays to the availability of some products both contracted over the period.
It was also a negative impact on net trade that was hampered by Brexit issues this year as goods exports fell by 5.8%.
The unemployment rate has fallen for eight months in a row and we're forecast to have the fastest growth in the G 7 this year.
As the world reopens, we know there are still challenges to overcome. Bridget Phillipson, Labour s shadow chief secretary to the Treasury, said this morning that the economic recovery is slowing and risks grinding to a halt.
We need urgent action to keep the economy moving and support households as we head into the winter, as prices rise and as the cost of living crisis continues to escalate. The Bank of England last week surprised markets when it refrained from hiking interest rates despite rising inflation as it waits to see how the economy copes with the end of the furlough scheme and other challenges, such as the supply chain crisis.