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UK consumer price inflation in March hits 30-year high

By Huw Hughes

15 Apr 2022

Business

Image: London's Regent Street via Pexels

UK consumer price inflation in March hit its highest point since 1992 as fuel prices continued to surge.

The Consumer Prices Index (CPI) rose by 7 percent in the year to March 2022, up from 6.2 percent in February, according to data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

That figure was above economists' estimates of 6.7 percent, according to a poll by Reuters.

It comes as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine continues to drive prices higher, with broad inflation recorded across fashion, furniture, fuel, hotels and restaurants and more.

Fashion prices rise

Clothing and footwear prices rose by 9.7 percent in the year to March 2022, resulting in a contribution of 0.57 percentage points to the all items 12-month rate.

Meanwhile, prices for furniture, household equipment and maintenance rose by 10.4 percent in the year to March, also contributing 0.57 percentage points to the headline rate.

Helen Dickinson, the chief executive of the British Retail Consortium, said: “Households around the UK will be feeling the pinch as the cost of living continues to rise. Retailers are trying to help consumers by expanding their value ranges and doing all they can to keep the price of essentials down.”

She continued: “Consumer confidence has fallen significantly in recent months, as worries around personal finances rise. Households face a plethora of rising costs, with higher inflation to come as the increase in the energy price cap pushes up April’s figures.

“Retailers are not exempt from these pressures, as the costs of transport, energy, raw materials and staff wages all continue to rise.”

BRC
ONS