Rishi Sunak’s pledge to halve inflation is being cast into doubt after an especially gloomy new set of data on price rises in Britain.

Headline inflation didn’t budge in May. It is stuck at 8.7 per cent – the same as April and the highest among the G7 major economies.

Today’s ONS figures offer zero respite to those struggling with the cost of living. Following its release, the interest rate charged on two year government borrowing shot up to a new 15 year high, inflicting fresh pain on households with two year fixed mortgages.

This is the third month in a row that inflation figures have been worse than forecast. The Bank of England had estimated a fall to 8.3 per cent by now.