UK inflation within target for 1st time in 4 years

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

LONDON (AP) — U.K. inflation slipped below the official 2 percent target for the first time since 2009 as retailers slashed prices on furniture, alcohol and tobacco.

Official figures on Tuesday show consumer prices were up 1.9 percent in the year to January, down from the 2 percent rate in December. The rate also reflected a drop in prices for recreational and household goods.

The Bank of England has been keeping its key interest rate at a record low of 0.5 percent to help an uneven recovery.

Until recently the bank had been indicating that its interest rates would remain low until joblessness fell to a more tolerable level. Mark Carney, the bank's governor, updated the guidance last week to broaden the range of indicators that would be considered before rates are raised.