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Inflation falls from 5.2% to 5.0%

Inflation falls from 5.2% to 5.0%

Category: Money

Updated: 15/11/2011
First Published: 15/11/2011

MONEYFACTS ARCHIVE
This article was correct at the time of publication. It is now over 6 months old so the content may be out of date.

Inflation fell from 5.2% to 5.0% in October, the Office for National Statistics has revealed.

While the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) rate remains well above the Bank of England's target of 2.0%, falls in the price of food, fuel and transport contributed to last month's fall.

But the small drop will do little to cheer savers who have seen the value of their funds eroded by stubbornly high inflation.

To beat inflation, a basic rate taxpayer at 20% needs to find a savings account paying 6.25% per annum, while a higher rate taxpayer at 40% needs to find an account paying at least 8.33%.

Today there is not a single standard savings account that taxpayers can choose to negate the effects of tax and inflation whether it be CPI at 5% or RPI at 5.4%.

The effect of inflation on savings means that £10,000 invested five years ago, allowing for average interest and tax at 20 per cent, would have the spending power of just £9,239 today.

"With returns so low and inflation unsteady, people don't know which way to turn; to inflation-proofing accounts which will protect them against inflation rises but will return less if inflation falls, or to hold out in a savings account that pays a poor return now but which could pay better if inflation falls," commented Sylvia Waycot, spokesperson for Moneyfacts.co.uk "It is a really difficult choice".

"Today's rate of inflation means hundreds of thousands of savers need accounts paying a staggering 6.25% before they earn a real rate of return on their savings.

"Anything less means they will fall into 'the eroding spending power trap' which has already wiped almost £800 off the spending power of £10,000 in just five years.

"Over the last year the number of savings accounts that beat inflation for basic rate taxpayers has dropped successively from 91 to absolutely none which leaves savers in an impossible position."

There are worries that a planned increase in fuel duty of 3p a litre in January could push inflation even higher.

The plan is to be debated later today in the Commons, with MPs expected to ask the Government to limit increases in the price of petrol and diesel.

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