Britain’s inflation has eased back to its lowest level since March 2022 but remained higher than expected as food prices continued to rise at a near-record pace.
The Office for National Statistics said Consumer Prices Index (CPI) inflation fell to 8.7 per cent in April.
It was down from 10.1 per cent in March, as 2022 energy price hikes were not repeated.
But it was higher than forecast by economists, who had pencilled in a drop to 8.2 per cent in April.
“The rate of inflation fell notably as the large energy price rises seen in 2022 were not repeated this April. But was offset partially by increases in the cost of second-hand cars and cigarettes,” stated ONS chief economist Grant Fitzner. “However, prices, in general, remain substantially higher than they were this time last year, with annual food price inflation near historic highs.”
The figures showed food CPI inflation at 19.3 per cent, down only slightly from March’s eye-watering 19.6 per cent.
“Although it is positive that it is now in single digits, food prices are still rising too fast,” added Chancellor Jeremy Hunt. “So, as well as helping families with around £3,000 of cost-of-living support this year and last, we must stick resolutely to the plan to get inflation down.”