In the United Kingdom, the rate of inflation declined to 6.8% in the year up to July, marking a notable decrease from the 7.9% recorded in June. This marks the second consecutive month of significant inflation rate reduction, and the current level represents a low point not seen in 60 weeks.
The statistics agency said the fall was largely driven by lower energy prices as last year’s sharp increases fell out of the annual comparison. It said that food price inflation, which also spiked sharply in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, eased too.
Though the decline in the headline rate of inflation will be welcome news for hard-pressed households, it’s unlikely to derail market expectations that the Bank of England will raise interest rates again next month, especially as wages are rising at a record high. Wednesday’s figures also showed that the core rate of inflation, which strips out volatile items such as energy and food, remains high.
UK Inflation falls to 6.8% in 60-week Low
The rate of inflation in the U.K. fell sharply in July to a 60-week low low largely on the back of lower energy prices, official figures showed Wednesday, a welcome development for hard-pressed households struggling during the cost of living crisis.
The Office for National Statistics said the annual rate of inflation, as measured by the consumer price index, was 6.8% in July, its lowest level since February 2022, the month Russia invaded Ukraine and sent energy prices surging.
The decline from June’s 7.9% rate was in line with economists’ expectations.
This decline can be attributed to factors such as a reduction in the energy price cap and a more modest increase in food costs, particularly items like milk, bread, and cereals.
The persistent elevation in inflation is mainly influenced by elevated costs in areas like hotels, air travel, and rents, as noted by the Office of National Statistics.
Consequently, the Bank of England is anticipated to implement another increase in interest rates next month as part of its efforts to alleviate the inflationary pressure.