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Inflation falls despite healthcare cost rise

Costly: Healthcare costs were up 8.3 per cent year over year

Bermuda paid 1.9 per cent more for a typical basket of goods and services in July that it did a year ago.

But the level of inflation fell 0.2 of a percentage point on the 2.1 per cent measured in June.

The average cost of goods and services also fell marginally — 0.1 per cent in July compared to the month before.

The biggest contributor to the year-on-year increase was an 8.3 per cent increase in the cost of health insurance, medical care and medicines.

And the cost of food and household goods, services and supplies also increased — both up 2.8 per cent compared to July last year.

Over the month from June, July saw a 4 per cent increase in the cost of fuel and power. This was attributed to a 13 per cent hike in the fuel adjustment rate, which rose on Belco bills from 11.5 cents per kilowatt hour to 13 cents.

Household goods and services and supplies rose 2.1 per cent month-on-month — put down by statisticians to an increase in postage costs.

The price of clothing and footwear also went up, by 0.7 per cent in July from the month before, but rent costs remained static, although rent-controlled properties saw a 0.1 per cent increase.

The price of food went up 0.1 per cent in July compared to June, the third consecutive monthly increase.

Major factors behind the increase were a 5.1 per cent increase in the average price of green peppers and a 4.3 per cent jump in the cost of oranges.

But a 0.4 per cent increase in the average cost of spirits was offset by a decrease of 0.4 per cent decrease in the cost of beer.

The cost of transport and foreign travel dropped, down 3.6 per cent in July, which followed a June increase of 5.9 per cent.

Airfares and premium fuels decreased by 9.6 per cent and 1 per cent respectively, but the cost of renting a vehicle overseas went up by 1.2 per cent.

Health and personal care also remained static in July, with an increase of 0.3 per cent in over-the-counter medicines offset by a 0.1 per cent decrease in the cost of toiletries, cosmetics and perfumes.