Fuel and clothing prices push up inflation

The UK inflation rate rose to 1% in the 12 months to March 2021, up from 0.7% to February, according to a new Office for National Statistics (ONS) report.

The rate was mainly pushed up by increases in the price of transport, fuel and clothing, the ONS said.

The report also concluded that the consumer prices index including owner occupiers' housing costs (CPIH) rose by 0.2% in March 2021, compared with little change in March 2020.

The largest contribution to the upward trend of the CPIH 12-month inflation rate came from transport (0.44%), principally from fuel prices which stand at 123.7p per liter in March 2021, compared with 119.4p per liter in the year before.

Footwear and clothing was the second highest contributor (0.11%), where prices rose by 1.6% between February and March 2021, particularly for women's clothing.

However, "food prices fell back on the year, as prices of some staples were lower than at the start of the pandemic", said Jonathan Athow, deputy national statistician for economic statistics at the ONS.

Food and non-alcoholic beverages accounted for the largest downward contribution to the change in the CPIH 12-month inflation rate (0.07%).

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