However, after 1870 the British economy has gained an association with decline, despite still growing in absolute terms. There are two reasons for gaining this reputation: the rate of growth was less than in previous years and other countries were growing at a faster rate. So comparatively, the era following 1870 was a time of economic failure for Britain. An example of this slowing of economic growth can be seen by the British manufacturing output statistics for the time. From 1856-1873, the annual growth of British manufacturing output was 2.6%. From 1873 to 1913 this annual growth had fallen to 2.0%. Britain's competitors were growing at a faster rate as well, as i said, which made the British economy look like it was failing even more.
The 1870 - 1913 figures for annual growth of output look like this:
- Britain - 1.9%
- Netherlands - 2.1%
- Germany - 2.8%
- USA - 4.2%