Inflation has reached 3.3 per cent, based on the consumer prices index (CPI).
The governor of the Bank of England, Mervyn King, is now required to write to the government and account for last month’s 0.3 per cent increase.
The rise came as no surprise to the Confederation of British Industry (CBI). It has predicted the rate will reach 3.8 per cent later this year.
It also estimated the UK economy will witness its slowest growth in 17 years. Its director general, Richard Lambert noted: "Over the past year, the CBI has consistently had to revise down its forecasts for economic growth."
The CBI explained inflation is being driven upwards by the rising cost of oil and rapidly increasing commodity prices.
"Our best bet is still that there will be a measure of economic growth in 2009. But the outlook has deteriorated in recent months, and considerable uncertainties remain," Mr Lambert concluded.
The Bank’s monetary policy committee (MPC) decisions directly affect commercial property investments and the MPC is reluctant to reduce rates during a period of rising inflation.