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U.K. Inflation Pressures Rise

A leading indicator of underlying inflation in Britain rose again in February to its highest level in almost two years, a leading research body said on Friday.

The Economic Cycle Research Institute (ECRI), a New York-based body that specialises in monitoring turning points in the business cycle, said its Future Inflation Gauge rose to 106.4 from an upwardly revised 106.1 in January and the highest since March 2001.

The index's smoothed annualised growth rate was steady at 3.2 percent.

"Thus, inflation pressures remain in a cyclical upswing, suggesting that UK inflation will stay in a rising trend."

The official rate of underlying inflation, RPIX, which excludes mortgage interest payments, rose to 3.0 percent in February, its highest since May 1998, well above the Bank of England's government-set target of 2.5 percent.