Europe Economy

UK Sept. Inflation is Steady at 1.8%

Consumer prices in the United Kingdom rose 1.8 percent in September compared with a year earlier, unchanged from the previous month, the government said Tuesday.

The report was a further sign that recent interest rate hikes have put the brakes on inflation, which had been above the government target of 2 percent earlier in the year.

The Bank of England has raised its base lending rate from 5 percent at the start of the year to the current level of 5.75 percent.

The inflation rate peaked at 3.1 percent in March, but for the past three months it has been below the target, the Office for National Statistics said.

The retail price index including mortgage interest was up 3.9 percent in the year ending in September, compared to a 4.1 percent rate in August.

The retail price index excluding mortgage interest was up 2.8 percent in September, versus a 2.7 percent rise in August.

The Office for National Statistics said the largest downward pressure came from lower gas and electricity bills. Clothing and footwear prices also rose less steeply in September than a year earlier.

Groceries were the largest upward factor, with milk, cheese and egg prices up 7 percent, and oil and fats including butter and margarine up 15 percent.