Tuesday, October 18, 2011
Why are they surprised?
Annual inflation surged to 5.2 percent last month as rising utility bills piled more pressure on households, "surprising economists expecting a smaller increase and putting the Bank of England in an uncomfortable position".
Consumer price inflation has not been higher since the series began in 1997, though it also hit 5.2 percent in September 2008. The retail price index rose to 5.6 percent, the highest for more than 20 years.
Once again, therefore, we see the so-called experts caught out by reality, completely out of touch with the gravity of the situation. Given Huhne's disgusting performance yesterday, though, it is only to be expected that ministers have lost the plot.
But they are now being told in no uncertain terms that their obsession with green taxes is driving up energy bills, bringing financial pain to millions of families.
Did they really think they could load all these charges onto utility costs and for them to have no effect? And bear in mind that the CPI does not measure increased taxation – or most local authority charges. Before even the headline inflation figure, we were already worse off.
They either have to ditch the greenery, or pay the political price.