By Jason Douglas and Xavier Fontdegloria
Annual inflation in the U.K. eased in September, ahead of an anticipated pickup in consumer prices later in the year.
Consumer prices rose 3.1% on the year in September, the Office for National Statistics said Wednesday, slightly slower than the 3.2% rise recorded in August.
The slowdown was driven by a smaller annual rise in prices at restaurants than the same month a year ago. Restaurant bills rose steeply in September last year following the end of a government subsidy for eating out.
Economists expect inflation in the U.K. to rise steeply in the coming months, however, fueled by higher energy bills and supply disruptions.
Accelerating inflation is testing central banks around the world. Expectations the Bank of England is poised to nudge up interest rates within the next few months have strengthened in recent days following hawkish comments by policy makers.
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