|Pix: every supermarket!|
Ed Miliband has made mileage this autumn with his "cost of living for ordinary families" refrain, which has clearly stung the government, not to say panicked them. As a campaign theme for late-2013 it may have saved his bacon, given the dreadful summer he endured. As regards the next election I suspect he may have gone too early with it, because the coalition probably has the power to bear down on quite a range of prices and costs, and has been handily tipped off on the political need to do so.
In the very short term, though, I'd say its the retailers themselves that are doing most to reduce inflation. This isn't the result of a scientific survey, but I have the very distinct impression that Christmas this year is costing less than 12 months ago, with a couple of very striking data-points to bolster the general observation. Never mind stunts like 'Black Friday': there is clearly a deadly serious supermarket price-war in progress. The blizzard of vouchers and coupons can hardly be missed - and when even Poundland is doing £1-off-when-you-next-spend-£10, we know things have reached quite a pass.
Do others share this observation ?
Quite what it means for the longer-term is a bit conjectural. Supermarkets going under ? Inflationary surge in the spring ? Who knows. Meantime - stock up & drink up !