WIDESPREAD fears among the UK public that Brexit will push up prices have been highlighted in a Bank of England survey.

Half of respondents said that Brexit had pushed up their expectations of the degree to which prices in shops would rise on a one-year view. Only 10 per cent declared Brexit had lowered their inflation expectations over this timeframe.

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Asked about the year after that, 44% of respondents reported Brexit had raised their expectations of the extent to which shop prices would rise over this period. Only 9% said Brexit had reduced their expectations of inflation over this timeframe.

The median expectation of annual UK consumer prices index inflation on a one-year view was 3.3%, up from 3.1% in the previous quarterly survey. This is the highest projection for annual CPI inflation on a 12-month view since November 2013.

The Bank noted that, by a margin of 57% to 7%, respondents believed the economy would end up weaker rather than stronger if prices started to rise faster.

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Annual UK CPI inflation was 2% in July, matching the target set for the Bank by the Treasury.

Fears of higher prices have been fuelled by sterling weakness, which raises the price of imports, amid an escalating political crisis, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson having pledged to take the UK out of the European Union by October 31 “no matter what”.

Sterling, which has been weighed down in recent years by the Brexit vote and has fallen sharply since the spring, has experienced some relief this week from moves by MPs aimed at preventing Mr Johnson from taking the UK out of the EU without a deal.

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The UK public’s expectations of inflation on a longer-term view have moderated during the latest quarter. Asked about their expectations of the annual inflation rate in the longer term, for example in five years’ time, respondents gave a median answer of 3.1%, down from 3.8% in May.