Britons are currently plagued by higher prices than ever when paying in forecourts, supermarkets and energy bills – and experts are now predicting a fresh economic challenge later this year. Consumer price index (CPI) inflation is currently at 7%, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), up from 6.2% in February.

This is more than the 6.7% expected by analysts.

The Bank of England reacted by only gradually raising the interest rate to stifle the rapid rise.

The Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee, led by Andrew Bailey, raised interest rates three times to raise the base rate from 0.1% in December to 0.75%.

Analysts are expecting three more hikes to take the rate to 1.5% in August – but that’s still a far cry from inflation which is climbing at a considerably faster pace.

READ MORE: Inflation hits new 30-year high at 7% – another blow for pensioners

What is a recession?

A recession means that there is no economic growth in an economy – in fact, during a recession the economy shrinks.

When the economy grows, a country’s citizens become slightly wealthier on average as the value of the goods and services it produces – its gross domestic product (GDP) – increases.

Steadily rising costs in almost every area are pushing huge numbers of UK households to the brink – and a recession will only add to the misery.

A recession is in place if there are two periods of declining GDP – so in the immediate term, a recession is unlikely.

But experts believe a recession could be on the cards later in the year.

Clearly PR managing director Paul Mackenzie-Cummins told Express.co.uk: ‘I think many commentators will be inclined to oppose the idea of ​​an impending recession, but any signs that we have seen in recent weeks point to an imminent threat by the end of this year at the latest.

“However, I doubt it is the same as the disaster we experienced in 2008.

“There is still a lot more potential growth within the economy in the pipeline over the coming months.

“I don’t think it will prevent us from sliding into recession, but it will probably allow it to be short-lived with an almost immediate rebound soon after.”

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