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Britain's annual inflation rate drops to zero from 0.1 per cent amid drops in gas prices

LONDON – Britain’s annual rate of inflation dropped back to zero in August from 0.1 per cent in July amid sharp falls in fuel prices.

The Office of National Statistic said Tuesday that the drop in consumer price inflation was due to a smaller rise in clothing prices compared with a year ago. Rising prices in soft drinks and furniture offset the fall in part.

The low rate will encourage the Bank of England to stay its course and refrain from raising interest rates, as inflation remains well below its target of 2 per cent.

Governor Mark Carney has said that the Bank of England is “drawing closer” to a rate increase — with things expected to become clearer by year’s end — as Britain’s economic growth remains among the fastest among advanced economies.