UK Inflation Rate Steady At 3-1/2-Year High


Consumer prices in the United Kingdom rose by 2.3 percent in the year to March 2017, the same pace as in February and in line with market expectations. The inflation rate remained at its highest level since September 2013, mainly boosted by rising prices for food, alcohol and tobacco, clothing and footwear, and miscellaneous goods and services.

The main upward contributors to change in the annual rate were: Food and non-alcoholic beverages (1.2 percent from 0.2 percent); alcoholic beverages and tobacco (4.9 percent from 2.8 percent); clothing and footwear (0.9 percent from -0.1 percent); and miscellaneous goods and services (1.8 percent from 1.1 percent). Prices also rose for: Transport (4.7 percent from 6.9 percent); recreation and culture (inflation steady at 1.6 percent); restaurants and hotels (2.9 percent from 3.2 percent); and housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels (1.1 percent from 0.7 percent).

The consumer prices index including owner occupiers’ housing costs (CPIH) also rose by 2.3 percent in March 2017, the same pace as in February.

The annual core inflation rate, which excludes prices of energy, food, alcohol and tobacco, fell to 1.8 percent in March from 2 percent in February and below market consensus of 1.9 percent.

On a monthly basis, consumer prices went up 0.4 percent after rising by 0.7 percent in February and above market expectations of a 0.3 percent gain. Prices rose for recreation and culture (0.4 percent), restaurants and hotels (0.2 percent), housing and utilities (0.1 percent) and food and non-alcoholic beverages (0.4 percent), while cost of transport fell (-0.5 percent).

ONS | Joana Ferreira | joana.ferreira@tradingeconomics.com
4/11/2017 8:55:17 AM