Retail prices edge up in May

Retail inflation is likely “to get worse before it gets better” according to the British Retail Consortium (BRC) as shop prices rise again.

Detailed in the latest BRC-NielsenIQ Shop Price Index for May 2022, Shop Price annual inflation accelerated to 2.8% in May, up from 2.7% in April.

This is above the 12- and 6-month average price increases of 0.7% and 1.9%, respectively. This marks the highest rate of inflation since July 2011.

Non-Food inflation decelerated to 2% in May, settling down from 2.2% in April. This is above the 12- and 6-month average price increases of 0.2% and 1.3%, respectively. Inflation remains close to the series’ high.

Food inflation accelerated to 4.3% in May, up from 3.5% in April. This is above the 12- and 6-month average price growth rates of 1.7% and 3.2%, respectively. This is the highest inflation rate since April 2012.

Helen Dickinson OBE, Chief Executive of the British Retail Consortium, said: “Retail prices edged up further as commodity, energy and transport costs continued to climb. Retailers have been working hard to protect their customers from these rising costs, particularly at a time when households are being impacted by a huge rise in household energy bills.

“It is likely to get worse before it gets better for consumers with prices continuing to rise and a further jump in energy costs coming in October. With little sign that the cost burden on retailers will ease any time soon, they will be left with little room for manoeuvre, especially those whose supply chains are affected by lockdowns in China and the war in Ukraine.

“While many people will welcome the Government’s latest announcement of support, uncertainty in the future of energy prices means they may only provide temporary respite.”

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