Category: Tax

Inflation rate falls

By Wendy McNulty

17 Nov 2023

The Consumer Prices Index including owner occupiers' housing costs (CPIH) rose by 4.7% in the 12 months to October 2023, down from 6.3% in September. This is the lowest annual rate since November 2021, the Office for National Statistics states.

The easing in the annual rate between September and October 2023 was a result of prices rising by 0.1% on the month compared with a rise of 1.6% the year before.

Electricity and gas prices fell on the month and the year, but prices were still high in comparison to recent years. The price of gas in October 2023 was around 60% higher than it was in October 2021 while the price of electricity in October 2023 was around 40% higher than it was in October 2021.

Food and non-alcoholic beverage prices increased by 0.1% between September and October 2023 following a 0.1% decline the previous month. In comparison there was a rise of 2.0% between the same two months in 2022. The annual rate eased from 12.2% in September 2023 to 10.1% in October 2023, and was significantly down on the recent high of 19.2% in March 2023, which was the highest annual rate seen for over 45 years.

Restaurant and hotel prices remained the same between September and October 2023, compared with an increase of 1.0% between the same two months a year ago. The annual rate eased to 7.6% in October 2023, down from 8.6% in September and a high of 12.1% in February.

Annual core Consumer Price Inflation rose by 5.7% in the year to September 2023, which was down from 6.1% in September and7.1% in May, which was the highest recorded since March 1992. The CPI all goods index rose by 2.9% in the year to October 2023,falling from 6.2% in September. The CPI all services index increased by 6.6% in the year to October 2023, falling from 6.9% in September 2023 and 7.4% in July 2023, which was the joint highest rate (with May 2023) since March 1992.

The CPI all items index fell to 4.6% for the year to October 2023, down from 6.7% in September 2023, but  Alex Veitch, Director of Policy and Insights at the British Chambers of Commerce said:

“Today’s news that CPI eased to 4.6% in October, the lowest level in two years, is encouraging. However, the reality for consumers is that prices are still worryingly high. That is dampening spending and hitting the businesses we represent.“

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