U.K. inflation accelerated in October, reaching a fresh four-decade high, as higher wholesale energy prices fed through households’ utility bills. The U.K.’s Office for National Statistics said Wednesday that consumer prices were 11.1% higher in October than a year earlier, more than the 10.1% rise registered in September.
This is the highest rate of inflation since February 1982, and beats the 10.9% consensus forecast from economists in a poll by The Wall Street Journal. The jump in inflation was mainly due to higher energy prices, which increased for most households even as the U.K. government implemented an energy price cap from Oct. 1. Electricity prices rose 65.7% on year, up from the 54% increase registered in September. Gas prices soared 128.9% compared to a year earlier, outstripping the 95.7% the prior month. The core price index–which excludes volatile categories such as food and energy–increased 6.5% in October on year, unchanged from September. The Bank of England expects inflation to remain around 11% in the fourth quarter, and to moderate slightly toward 10% in 2023’s first quarter. Write to Xavier Fontdegloria at email@example.com