Socialist Worker

Cost of living is soaring

Issue No. 2101

Officially Britain’s rate of inflation rose to 3 percent this week. Yet the real rate of inflation for ordinary people is rising twice as fast as the official figures show.

Consumer Price Index (CPI) rate of inflation – the government’s preferred measure – was up from 2.5 percent in March to 3 percent in April.

The more accurate Retail Price Index (RPI) rate of inflation – which includes some housing costs such as mortgage payments – rose to 4.2 percent in April, up from 3.8 percent in March.

The main cause of the rise was increases in the average houshold bill. Food – particularly meat, fruit, bread, cereals and fish – are all rising fast.

A family which spent £100 a week on food last year now has to find another £19.10 a week, or £993, a year for the same products. Once bills for petrol, mortgages, power and council tax are added, the extra cost is more like £2,200.

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Tue 13 May 2008, 19:09 BST
Issue No. 2101
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