A quarterly survey conducted by Barclays has shown that UK inflation is expected to rise at its sharpest rate in more than five years following the sharp fall in sterling since June’s Brexit vote.
Barclays said expectations for inflation in one year’s time rose to 2.2% in its latest survey conducted between November 9 and November 15, up from 1.7% in the previous survey three months earlier.
The Bank of England forecast this month that consumer price inflation will rise to 2.7% in a year’s time from 0.9% in October, largely due to sterling’s fall of over 15% against the U.S. dollar since Britain voted to leave the European Union.
Many economists think it could rise faster, and the central bank is concerned that expectations of a persistent period of above-target inflation do not get entrenched.
Barclays said inflation expectations one to two years ahead rose to 2.7% – the highest since mid-2014 – from 2% three months ago. Five-year expectations increased to 3.7% from 3.0%, matching the level of early 2016.
Barclays said the rise in short-term inflation expectations was probably driven by news in October that some consumer goods firms were seeking to raise prices for popular branded products such as the savoury yeast spread Marmite.
However, it did not view the increase as sufficient to alarm central bankers yet.
“We do not see current expectations as worrying,” Barclays said in a note to clients. “While the BoE Monetary Policy Committee will likely welcome the tame response of inflation expectations so far, it will nonetheless maintain a relatively tough rhetoric to ensure that this remains the case,” it added.
Barclays survey was conducted by polling company GfK in a face-to-face survey of 2,032 adults.