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Inflation falls back to 4.8% but continues to push UK into debt

Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation fell back to 4.8 per cent in November, the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics have shown.

The rate fell by 0.2 per cent, down from 5 per cent in October, with the largest downward pressure coming from food, petrol, clothing and furniture. This was partially offset by upward pressures from increases in the cost of domestic heating and sales of alcohol.

But at 4.8 per cent, inflation is still pushing millions of people into debt. Moneysupermarket.com claims that 10 million UK consumers will be tipped into or pushed further into debt over the festive season.

Commenting, Kevin Mountford, head of banking at Moneysupermarket.com said: "The rising cost of living is something UK households have had to bear the brunt of over the last few years, with rising energy, fuel and food costs putting significant pressure on the nation's wallets. It is no surprise that a high number of people will be tipped into debt this festive season, and consumers really need to take immediate steps to manage debt, especially in the current economic climate.

"With inflationary pressures starting to ease slightly over the past couple of months, and predictions of further falls towards the Bank of England's inflation target of two per cent in 2012, it is imperative that households take the opportunity to bring their finances under control. Sitting down and going through your finances and reviewing all your outgoings can really make a difference. Switching to cheaper products or moving expensive debts over to cheaper forms of borrowing, can help free up cash which is vital at a time when the cost of living has been putting the nation's wallets under severe pressure."