This page was last updated in July 2018.

Consumer Price Index

The Consumer Prices Index including owner occupiers’ housing costs (CPIH) 12-month inflation rate was 2.3% in July 2018, unchanged from June 2018.

Rising prices for computer games and transport fares produced the largest upward contributions to change in the 12-month rate between June and July 2018, although computer game prices tend to be highly variable from month to month.

The upward effects were offset by falls in prices for clothing and footwear, and the removal of initial charges for investment in some unit trusts.

Prices for clothing and footwear fell by 0.4% between July 2017 and July 2018, the first time the 12-month rate has been negative since October 2016.

The Consumer Prices Index (CPI) 12-month rate was 2.5% in July 2018, up from 2.4% in June 2018.


Consumer price indices are important indicators of how the UK economy is performing.

The indices are used in many ways by the government, businesses and society in general. They can affect interest rates, tax allowances, wages, state benefits, pensions, maintenance, contracts and many other payments. They also show the impact of inflation on family budgets.

Consumer price inflation is the rate at which the prices of the goods and services bought by households rise or fall; it is estimated by using consumer price indices. One way to understand a price index is to think of a very large shopping basket containing all the goods and services bought by households. The price index estimates changes to the total cost of this basket. Most Office for National Statistics (ONS) price indices are published monthly.

The Retail Prices Index (RPI) – a long-standing measure of UK inflation – and its derivatives do not meet the required standard for designation as National Statistics. The RPI, its subcomponents and the RPIX continue to be published as they are tied to long-term contracts.



Gross domestic product (GDP) growth is the main indicator of economic performance. There are three approaches used to measure GDP; the output approach, the expenditure approach and the income approach. GDP per head is calculated by dividing GDP in chained volume measures by the population estimates and projections. It is not a measure of productivity or well-being, but is a useful statistic as it removes the impact of the changing size of the population from headline GDP figures.