UK consumer price index updated for February 2006
The February 2006 consumer price index (CPI) for the United Kingdom has been published by the government's office of statistics, showing a rose of 2.0%, up from 1.9% in January 2006, with the largest upward contributions coming from the areas of recreation and culture.
In the year to February, the 'all items' retail prices index (RPI) rose by 2.4%, as it did in January. Over the same period, the all items RPI excluding mortgage interest payments index rose by 2.3%, unchanged from January.
Upward effects The only large upward effect on the CPI annual rate came from recreation and culture, due to large upward contributions from recreational items such as computer games which increased in February in contrast to sales one year before, and newspapers, books and stationery, with price recoveries being noted for hardback books in a number of outlets in February (following special offers a month earlier).
A small upward effect also came from furniture, household equipment and routine maintenance, due to carpets and other floor coverings, with prices for some carpets increasing in February - compared with no significant change in pricing one year before.
Downward effects The only large downward effect on the CPI annual rate came from transport, mainly due to transport services. Air fares fell in February for the second month in succession. Reduced fares, particularly on domestic routes, were in contrast to price rises one year before (for both domestic and international travel).
A small downward effect also came from fuels and lubricants. The average recorded price for a litre of petrol rose by £0.004 in February, reaching £0.892. This increase was less than in February 2005, when average prices rose by £0.006 per litre to £0.798. Partially offsetting small upward contributions came from rail fares and sea fares.
Another small downward effect came from alcoholic beverages and tobacco, with prices overall falling in February compared with rises one year before.