U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Photo: Dominic Lipinski/Pool/AFP/Getty Images

The U.K.'s economy shrank by 0.2% in 2019's second quarter, its first contraction since 2012, the country's Office of National Statistics reported on Friday.

What's happening: Fears of a no-deal Brexit, which could damage the U.K. economy as it drops out of the European Union onto World Trade Organization rules, on October 31 are dampening the country's growth.

  • Meanwhile, those same fears are causing the pound to lose value versus the dollar, plunging to its lowest level in more than two years last month, per Axios' Dion Rabouin.

The other side: "Friday’s figures showed that British consumers remain upbeat as unemployment is at 44-year lows and wages are rising solidly and outpacing inflation," the AP reports.

Go deeper: Everything you need to know about Brexit

Go deeper

22 mins ago - Podcasts

House antitrust chair talks USA vs. Google

The Justice Department filed a 63-page antitrust lawsuit against Google related to the tech giant's search and advertising business. This comes just weeks after the House subcommittee on antitrust issued its own scathing report on Google and other Big Tech companies, arguing they've become digital monopolies.

Axios Re:Cap talks with Rep. David Cicilline (D-R.I.), chair of the subcommittee on antitrust, about Google, the DOJ's lawsuit and Congress' next move.

34 mins ago - Economy & Business

Boeing research shows disinfectants kill coronavirus on airplanes

Electrostatic spraying of disinfectant. Photo: Delta Air Lines

Boeing and researchers at the University of Arizona say their experiment with a live virus on an unoccupied airplane proves that the cleaning methods currently used by airlines are effective in destroying the virus that causes COVID-19.

Why it matters: Deep cleaning aircraft between flights is one of many tactics the airline industry is using to try to restore public confidence in flying during the pandemic. The researchers say their study proves there is virtually no risk of transmission from touching objects including armrests, tray tables, overhead bins or lavatory handles on a plane.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Senate Democrats block vote on McConnell's targeted COVID relief bill McConnell urges White House not to strike stimulus deal before election.
  2. Economy: Why the stimulus delay isn't a crisis (yet).
  3. Health: Studies show drop in COVID death rate — The next wave is gaining steam — The overwhelming aftershocks of the pandemic.
  4. Education: Schools haven't become hotspots — San Francisco public schools likely won't reopen before the end of the year.