Jan 27, 6:31 AM EST

Britain's economy loses steam in fourth quarter

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LONDON (AP) -- Official figures show Britain's economy slowed in the fourth quarter of 2014 but remained one of the better-performing economies in the developed world.

The economy grew 0.5 percent from the previous three-month period. That's a dip from a 0.7 percent expansion rate in the third quarter and 0.8 percent in the second quarter. The quarterly rate has not been slower since the fourth quarter of 2013, when it was 0.4 percent.

However, the Office of National Statistics says the economy grew by 2.6 percent for the year - the best level since 2007 and among the highest rates among the world' biggest economies.

Joe Grice, ONS chief economist, says there was slower activity in industries like construction, mining and energy supply, which he says "can be erratic."

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