Inflation rose to 3.1% in November, the highest rate in over five years, putting a further squeeze on living standards for families across the UK.
The Office of National Statistics (ONS) said that rises in prices of computer games and smaller than expected falls in air fares were the major causes of the rise in the Consumer Price Index (CPI).
Wage growth continues to flag behind inflation, with the latest data showing that average weekly wages were growing at 2.2%, resulting in a 0.9% squeeze on living standards. Inflation has outpaced wage growth for most of 2017, leaving consumers feeling the pinch.
Mark Carney, the governor of the Bank of England, will write a letter to Chancellor Philip Hammond to explain why inflation is more than a percentage point higher than the 2% target.
The Bank of England raised interest rates from a historic low of 0.25% to 0.5% last month in an effort to reduce inflation. No further increases are expected in the coming months.