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Updated 15:32 03/03/21

UK inflation reaches 20-month low as oil prices drop

By Liam Sheasby, News Editor

19 Dec 2018

New figures from the Office for National Statistics show that UK inflation has reached the lowest level since March 2017, falling to 2.3% for the previous year as of November.

The Consumer Prices Index, evaluated by the ONS, was 2.4% in October. The drop of 0.1% brings inflation closer to the Bank of England’s 2% target, but also means that wage growth is now 1% greater than the rate of inflation.

The swift drop in the price of Brent crude helped lower petrol prices and pull inflation down, as did a reduction in computer game prices, concert ticket prices, and the cost of toys and other cultural services. Tobacco, accommodation, and passenger sea transport all showed strong price rises, defying the general drop in inflation.

Average UK house price growth slowed to 2.7%y/y in October according to the latest ONS/Land Registry figures. London & the N. East both saw house price falls, while the N. West & N. Ireland are currently seeing the fastest rates of average house price inflation.

UK house price inflation also fell according to today's ONS press release, hitting its lowest rate for more than five years. The average UK property rose by 2.7% in price up to October, compared with 3% up to September, but these figures are slightly misleading. London’s property price drop of 1.7% has lowered the national average, when in fact the North West, Northern Ireland, Yorkshire, and the East Midlands all showed gains of 3.8% – 4.9%.

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