British consumer price inflation slipped back in February from a six-month high it had reached the month before, reflecting a drop in the cost of fuel and video games that predated the massive current impact of coronavirus on the economy.

CPI fell to 1.7% in February

Super market
Supermarket Pixabay

CPI fell to 1.7 percent in February from 1.8 percent in January, official figures showed on Wednesday, in line with forecasts in a Reuters poll, while a core measure of the index - which excludes energy, food, alcohol and tobacco - unexpectedly rose to 1.7 percent. Inflation remains well below the Bank of England's two percent target, after striking its lowest in more than three years in December at 1.3 percent, and there was little immediate market reaction to the data.

Retail price inflation, an older, less accurate measure still used for inflation-linked government bonds and some commercial contracts, fell to 2.5 percent from 2.7 percent in January. Producer output price inflation - a measure which can give a guide to incoming inflation pressures - slowed more than expected to 0.4 percent in February from one percent in January.