The UK’s rate of inflation as measured by the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) fell unexpectedly to 2.6% in June, down from 2.9% in May, figures published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) have revealed.
The latest rate represents the first fall in inflation since October 2016.
Lower petrol and diesel prices, alongside a decline in prices for recreational and cultural goods, helped to drive down inflation, the ONS stated.
Commenting on the data, Suren Thiru, Head of Economics at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said: ‘While the fall in inflation in June will surprise many, consumer price growth is likely to resume its upward trend in the coming months, with the elevated cost of imported raw materials still filtering through supply chains.
‘Inflation remains a major risk to the UK’s growth prospects this year, with rising cost pressures for both consumers and businesses likely to dampen overall economic activity.’
Experts have also warned that inflation continues to outstrip wage growth.
Frances O’Grady, General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress (TUC), stated: ‘The government must stop this cost of living squeeze. Many working people are caught in a vice as rising prices crush their pay.’