價格居高不下,英國面臨嚴峻的冬季

2週前
價格居高不下,英國面臨嚴峻的冬季

英國很可能已經看到了實際通貨膨脹數字的峰值。我們還遠遠沒有達到對社會和家庭影響的峰值。

即使是在綠樹成蔭的格洛斯特郡科茨沃爾德,那裡一直都有一些貧困地區,我多次被告知,人們根本沒有把他們的暖氣打開,這對他們的健康有影響。

到目前為止,這可能是可控的,這要歸功於異常溫和的冬季,這也有助於平抑國際市場的天然氣和電力價格。但是,人們對冬季真正到來時發生的情況感到非常擔心。

對於生活費用的數字來說,10月總是會是一個非常艱難的月份。儘管有能源價格保證,11.1%的通脹率仍處於41年來的高位。如果沒有這個保證,即把典型賬單的上漲限制在2500英鎊以內,那麼通貨膨脹率可能會達到13%。

但是,消費者不需要被告知這有多廣泛,食品價格通脹率再次上升到45年來的最高水平,這是由牛奶和奶酪等物品的成本推動的。

然而,在全球市場上,有最小的跡象表明,一年前通脹飆升背後的最初原因,即大流行病後的供應鏈問題,正在開始轉向。這在二手車市場可以看得最清楚,該市場是供應鏈斷裂後通脹飆升的最早預兆之一,現在正引領下跌。對中國的 "零關稅 "封鎖採取更寬鬆的做法,也意味着在價格方面出現了一些曙光。

能源問題仍然嚴峻,但這在很大程度上取決於明天財政部長在秋季聲明中的宣布。我預計,我們不僅會聽到一個更有針對性的支持計劃,而且還會聽到一些與福利有關的支持計劃的延續,根據Liz Truss的計劃,這些計劃將於4月結束。

但毫無疑問,一些高於平均水平的家庭,如果不認為自己是 "富人",將面臨更少的保護,以抵禦國際能源市場的寒風和烏克蘭戰爭。

因此,至少在幾個月內,價格將保持在很高的水平,因為這些全球因素需要一些時間才能反饋到日常價格中。


Britain may well have seen the peak in the actual inflation number. We are nowhere near the peak of the impact on society and households.

Even in the leafy Gloucestershire Cotswolds, where there always have been pockets of deprivation, I was repeatedly told that people were simply not putting their heating on, with impacts on their health.

That might have been manageable up until now, thanks to the unusually mild winter, which has also helped calm the international market prices for gas and electricity. But there is much fear about what happens when winter hits in earnest.

October was always going to be a very tough month for figures on the cost of living. Despite the Energy Price Guarantee, inflation at 11.1% is at a 41-year high. Without the guarantee, which limits the rise of typical bills to £2,500, it could have been more like 13%.

But consumers don't need to be told how wide-ranging this is, with food price inflation up again to the highest rate in 45 years, driven by the cost of things like milk and cheese.

And yet in global markets there are the smallest signs that the initial reasons behind the spike in inflation a year ago, post-pandemic supply chain problems, are starting to turn. It can be seen most clearly in the used car market, which was among the very first harbingers of the broken supply chain inflation spike, and is now leading the falls. The more relaxed approach to China's "zero Covid" lockdowns has also meant there is some light at the end of the tunnel about prices.

Energy remains tough, but much will depend on tomorrow's announcements from the chancellor at his Autumn Statement. I expect that we will hear not just about a more targeted scheme of support, but also about the rollover of some of the welfare-related support schemes that were due to end in April under Liz Truss' plans.

But undoubtedly some above-average households, that do not consider themselves to be "rich", will be facing less protection from the cold winds of the international energy markets and the war in Ukraine.

So prices will stay very high for a few months at least, as it takes some time for these global factors to feed into everyday prices.

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