UK inflation eases in February along with furniture prices

Furniture prices fell in February as overall inflation eased to its lowest rate for nearly two and half years. 

According to the latest Office for National for National Statistics (ONS) data, the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) rose by 3.4% in the 12 months to February 2024, down from 4.0% in January. On a monthly basis, CPI rose by 0.6% in February 2024, compared with a rise of 1.1% in February 2023.

Furniture and furnishing prices fell by 1.6% in February, down from a decline of 1.5% in January, while down from a 10% rise compared to the same month last year.

The retail price of household furniture decreased by 1.6% in the month, down from a fall of 1.5%, while down from 10.4% last year.

Garden furniture prices rose 0.1%, down from 0.2% on last month and down from 10.8% compared to last year.

Carpets and other floorcoverings prices rose 1.7%, up from a decline of 0.5% the previous month, while also up from an 10.4% rise last year.

Other household textile prices, including furnishings fabrics, curtains and bedding, saw prices rise by 2.5%, down from 3.6% the previous month, while down from 4.7% on last year.

Meanwhile, Producer Price Inflation (PPI) saw the rate of furniture output prices, factory gate, rise 3.8% in February on the same month in the previous year. The rate was in line with the rise of 3.8% in January. Furniture input prices, material cost of production, were down -1.2% in February on the same month last year, and down from a decline of -2% the previous month.

Producer input prices fell by 2.7% in the year to February 2024, up from a revised fall of 2.8% in the year to January 2024. Producer output (factory gate) prices rose by 0.4% in the year to February 2024, up from a revised fall of 0.3% in the year to January 2024. On a monthly basis, producer input prices fell by 0.4% and output prices rose by 0.3% in February 2024.

Commenting on the inflation figures for February, ONS Chief Economist Grant Fitzner said: “Inflation eased in February to its lowest rate for nearly two and half years.  

“Food prices were the main driver of the fall, with prices almost unchanged this year compared with a large rise last year, while restaurant and café price rises also slowed. These falls were only partially offset by price rises at the pump and a further increase in rental costs.”

Helen Dickinson, Chief Executive of the British Retail Consortium, added: “Inflation xxxxx

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