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CPI inflation rose only to 2.1% in April, from 1.9% in March, undershooting the 2.2% consensus and MPC forecasts, as well as our own 2.3% estimate.
The contribution of energy prices to CPI inflation is set to increase over the coming months, following the pick-up in Brent oil prices to $74 per barrel, from $65 at the beginning of March.
The rise in oil prices to a four-year high of $82 will slow the pace at which inflation falls back over the next year only modestly.
February's consumer price figures, released yesterday, put more pressure on the MPC to stick to its plans for an "ongoing" tightening of monetary policy, despite the uncertainty created by the Brexit chaos.
We expect May's consumer prices report, released on Wednesday, to show that CPI inflation fell to 2.0% in May, from 2.1% in April.
May's consumer prices figures bolster the case for the MPC to sit tight and wait until next year to raise interest rates, when the economy should have more momentum.
We expect July's consumer prices report, due on Wednesday, to reveal that CPI inflation dropped to 1.8% in July, from 2.0% in June.
Brexit talks will dominate the headlines this week, with the focal point set to be a meeting of the European Council on Wednesday, where E.U. leaders might give the green light for an extraordinary summit next month to formalise the Withdrawal Agreement.
The headline rate of CPI inflation held steady at the 2% target in June, in line with the consensus and the MPC's Inflation Report forecast.
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