How much did things cost in 1986?

These are prices of some sample items in 1986.

How much were these prices for someone on an average income in 1986? To get a feel for this, I have adjusted them for the increase in incomes from 1986 to today. You can see these adjusted prices in the column 'Income adjusted'.

Gallon of petrol£1.79£7.50
Bottle of whisky (Teacher's) (Sainsbury's)£7.59£32
Martini Extra Dry Vermouth (Sainsbury's)£2.19£9.10
Heineken 4 cans (Sainsbury's)£1.85£7.70
Pint of beer (bitter)82p£3.40
20 cigarettes - Lambert & Bulter 100s£1.34£5.60
22" Decca colour TV (Dixons)£249.99£1,000
Sanyo VHS recorder (Comet)£349.99£1,500
Sinclair Specturm 2+ 128K (Currys)£159.99£670
Hotpoint fridge-freezer (House of Fraser)£309.90£1,300
Philips microwave oven (Asda)£119.99£500
Hotpoint Electronic automatic washing machine (House of Fraser)£309.90£1,300
Mobile phone - Mitsubishi Roamer£2200£9,200
Daily Mirror newspaper18p75p
Average house price£48,000£200,000
250g Country Life butter (Co-op)47p£2
100g Sainsbury's Brazilian blend coffee powder99p£4.10
Pint of milk (supermarket) (Co-op)19p 79p
Smiths crisps 6 bag (Co-op)55p£2.30
Pack of 18 size 3 eggs (Tesco)99p£4.10
Irish Cheddar cheese (1lb) (Sainsbury's)99p£4.10
Flora margarine 500g (Asda)61p£2.50
Ford Sierra 1.6L£7,478£31,000

The income adjusted prices are based on the Bank of England's Three Centuries Macroeconomic Dataset Version 2.3 - 30 June 2016. I have updated the income figures based on the ONS: Series code KAB9, adjusted to bring the figures inline with the Bank of England's.

For a comparison of prices in 1986 adjusted for inflation see Infation adjusted prices for 1986

By Steven Braggs, February 2021, updated May 2022

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