Vinyl Records and Air Fryers Join ONS Inflation Basket

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has introduced vinyl records into its basket of goods used to gauge inflation for the first time since 1992.

Joining the list are also air fryers and gluten-free bread, while hand sanitiser bottles and pints of Guinness in pubs have been removed.

The UK statistics agency cited a “resurgence in popularity” for physical vinyl records as the reason for their inclusion after over three decades.

Matt Corder, deputy director for prices at the ONS, commented, “The return of vinyl records illustrates how cultural revivals can impact our spending habits.”

Despite the convenience offered by music streaming services like Spotify, demand for vinyl records has been steadily rising, leading to their displacement from the basket in the 1990s by CDs and cassettes.

According to the ONS, spending on air fryers surged by 30 per cent between 2021 and 2022, attributed to “the energy-saving aspect and health benefits of cooking with less oil.”

Other additions to the basket include rice cakes, spray oil, gluten-free bread, and sunflower and pumpkin seeds, reflecting the influence of healthier lifestyle choices on consumer spending.

The ONS regularly updates its basket of goods to reflect changing consumer preferences. New items are introduced to mirror significant or rising consumer spending, while those with low expenditure are removed.

Hand sanitiser has been omitted from the list, indicating a shift in consumer behaviours as the impact of the Covid-19 crisis wanes. During the pandemic, hand sanitiser sales surged as households sought to minimize the risk of contracting the virus.

Sofa beds have been replaced by pull-out beds due to changing consumer preferences. Other removed items include bakeware like cooking trays, rotisserie-cooked whole chickens, loose cooked ham, and popcorn.

Some exclusions are not solely based on reduced purchases but on the ONS’s judgment that specific items no longer require price tracking. Draught stout, for example, has been removed because its price tends to move in tandem with draught bitter.

The ONS will unveil its February inflation estimate on March 20. The Office for Budget Responsibility anticipates inflation returning to the Bank’s target within a few months.

Photo by Clem Onojeghuo on Unsplash

Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top