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BCC: Spring Statement must combat historic inflation surge

Commenting on the ONS Inflation data for February 2022, Head of Economics at the BCC, Suren Thiru, said:

“The latest figures confirm that inflation remains on an historic upward trajectory.

February’s increase largely reflected upward contributions from rising fuel prices, the higher cost of second-hand cars and more costly housing and household services, including higher utility bills.

This inflationary surge will intensify in the coming months as the energy price cap rise, the reversal of the hospitality VAT cut and upward pressure on energy and commodity prices from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, lifts inflation above 8%.

The Russian invasion is also likely to lengthen the current spike in inflation by driving a prolonged surge in wholesale energy costs and sustained supply chain disruption.

“The looming National insurance hike risks exacerbating this surge in consumer prices by damaging business cashflow further, leaving many firms with little option but to continue raising prices.

“It is critical that the chancellor uses today’s Spring Statement to give firms the financial headroom to keep a lid on prices, by tackling the cost of doing business crisis through delaying the national insurance rise and introducing a temporary energy price cap for small businesses.”

More detail on the ONS Inflation data can be found here.

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