Friday, October 7, 2022

UK inflation accelerates to near 30-year peak

UK inflation accelerates to near 30-year peak

LONDON (AFP) – British annual inflation accelerated in December to its highest level for almost three decades, official data showed Wednesday, fuelled by price gains for clothing, food and furniture.

The rate hit 5.4 percent last month after striking a decade-high in November on jumping fuel costs, the Office for National Statistics said in a statement.

Inflation was last higher in March 1992 when it had stood at 7.1 percent.

Economies worldwide are battling against decades-high inflation that is forcing central banks to hike interest rates, including the Bank of England which last month raised its key borrowing cost.

"The inflation rate rose again at the end of the year and has not been higher for almost 30 years," said ONS chief economist Grant Fitzner.

"Food prices again grew strongly while increases in furniture and clothing also pushed up annual inflation.

"These large rises were slightly offset by petrol prices, which despite being at record levels were stable this month, but rose this time last year."

Fitzner added that last year's Covid lockdowns had impacted some items but the overall impact on headline inflation rate was "negligible".