LONDON - Britain’s economy grew strongly in the second quarter, overtaking the size it achieved before the global financial crisis, data showed on Friday in the latest sign of robust recovery.

The latest figures, along with a sharp fall in unemployment to the lowest level for five years, give a boost to the government before a general election next year.

Gross domestic product (GDP) expanded by 0.8 percent between April and June from the first quarter, when it grew by the same amount, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) revealed in a statement that matched market expectations.

The data was published one day after the International Monetary Fund forecast Britain, a member of the European Union but not of the eurozone, would outpace the world’s major advanced economies this year.

The economy is now 0.2 percent bigger than before its pre-crisis peak in early 2008, the ONS added, lifting Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron’s coalition government, which has pursued austerity and tax-raising policies since it won power in 2010.

The coalition, comprising also minority partners the Liberal Democrats, has sought to slash a record deficit inherited from the previous Labour administration, in order to ward off tensions arising from the eurozone debt crisis, while lifting investor confidence and boosting growth.