The United Kingdom recorded its highest inflation rate in over four decades on Tuesday. Inflation was registered at 9.1% in the 12 months to May as Russia’s war in Ukraine drove food and fuel prices ever higher.
The consumer price inflation in the United Kingdom rose slightly from 9% in April– reaching its highest point since 1982, according to the country’s Office for National Statistics. However, this was no surprise.
Top international economists had forecast the numbers and said that this signals no quick end to the cost-of-living squeeze facing millions in Britain, Associated Press reported. The United Kingdom is further expected to raise its cap on domestic energy bills, which could drive inflation up to 11%, the Bank of England said.
What are experts saying?
Grant Fitzner, the chief economist of the Office for National Statistics, said that “continued steep food price rises and record-high petrol prices were offset by clothing costs rising by less than this time last year, and a drop in often fluctuating computer games prices.”
Think tank Resolution Foundation’s senior economist Jack Leslie said inflation would likely climb further in June because of “the big spike in petrol prices over the past month”, according to Associated Press reports.
What is the situation across the globe?
Inflation is soaring worldwide. The United States reported a rate of 8.6% in May and the 19 countries that use the euro recorded 8.1% inflation the same month.
Millions of people in Britain, like those across Europe, are seeing their cost of living soar, in part driven by Russia’s war in Ukraine that is squeezing supplies of energy and food staples such as wheat.
What else is happening in the UK?
The pressure is driving British workers to seek substantial pay increases, a move the Conservative government argues could spark a wage-price spiral, driving inflation even higher.
Tens of thousands of railway workers are walking off the job for three days this week in the country’s biggest transit strike for three decades, and a potential precursor to a summer of labor discontent.