Pressure mounts on Sunak as inflation hits new 30-year high of 6.2% Business


We start the day with yet another reminder of the cost of living crisis facing UK households, with the latest inflation figures even higher than expected.

The consumer price index jumped to 6.2% in February, a new high in 30 years. That’s up from 5.5% the previous month and ahead of expectations of 6%.

Housing and household services were the main drivers of higher prices, reflecting the recent spike in energy bills. Transport costs – mainly fuel and used cars – have also risen sharply.

The numbers precede Rishi Sunak’s spring statement later today. Borrowing figures show the Chancellor has some room to play, and he faces calls to use the money to ease the strain on household finances.

5 things to start your day

1) Planning overhaul opens door to hundreds of new wind farms The proposals will make it much harder for the public to object

2) Homebuilders hit back at Michael Gove’s claim they are a ‘cartel’ Industry calls minister’s comments ‘disturbing’ as they warn botched reforms could push businesses out of business

3) The war to win over ethical investors in Shell’s North Sea oil revolution As the world turns to renewable energy, the City is also increasingly focusing on ethical investing

4) How Gazprom quietly took over Britain’s heavy industry Taxpayers risk paying a huge price to take back Russia’s share of the UK energy market

5) P&O Ferries denies breaking the law or deploying Taser-trained security guards Kwasi Kwarteng orders investigation into reports that new agency staff will be paid below minimum wage

What happened overnight

Asian markets extended their gains on Wednesday, following a rally in New York. Tokyo jumped more than 2% and Hong Kong continued to enjoy a tech rally fueled by China’s pledge to support markets. Shanghai, Seoul, Sydney, Singapore, Taipei and Jakarta were also in the lead, although Manila and Wellington fell.

coming today

  • Business : Boot (Henry), Dignity, Pendragon, Petrofac, Saga, SigmaRoc, Ultra Electronics (full year); Halma (commercial update)
  • Economy: Inflation, Spring Statement, Andrew Bailey at BIS Innovation Summit (UK)consumer confidence (eurozone)

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This notice was published: 2022-03-23 07:20:57

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