Inflation rate is negative for fourth consecutive month
Bermuda’s annual inflation rate remained negative for the fourth consecutive month in October at -0.2 per cent.
In July 2020, the island recorded its first negative inflation rate since 1965.
Consumers paid 0.2 per cent less for a basket of goods and services included in the Consumer Price Index in October, than they did in the same month in 2019.
Between September and October, the average cost of goods and services in the CPI increased 0.3 per cent. The all-items index rose from 105.4 to 105.7 in October.
This means that the basket of goods and services that cost $100 in April 2015 now costs $105.70.
Rent rose 1.2 per cent for the month. The overall increase in this sector was a direct result of a 2.6 per cent rise in the average cost of rental units not subject to rent control.
The average cost of items in the household goods, service and supplies sector increased by 0.3 per cent. Within the household goods sub-sector, living room and bedroom furniture prices advanced 10.3 per cent and 5.7 per cent, respectively.
Prices in the clothing and footwear sector edged up 0.2 per cent in October. The average cost of watches and jewellery increased 7.7 per cent and 3.2 per cent, respectively.
On average, food prices rose 0.1 per cent in the month. Among the main items contributing to the increase were fresh and frozen spare ribs, the cost of which was up 8.6 per cent, while the cost of roast beef increased by 6.8 per cent and the price of imported lettuce rose 4.2 per cent.
The education, recreation, entertainment and reading sector climbed 0.1 per cent. The average cost of pet food rose 0.8 per cent.
The transport and foreign travel sector moved up 0.1 per cent in October, but declined by 5.9 per cent compared to October, 2019.
The average cost of premium fuels and mixed fuels rose 1.8 per cent, and 1.7 per cent, respectively, but also fell on an annual basis.
The tobacco and liquor sector declined 0.6 per cent in response to a 2.1 per cent decrease in the average price of wines.
There was no price movement in the fuel and power sector, while the health and personal care sector was static for the month.
Wayne Furbert, Minister for the Cabinet Office, said: “The transport and foreign travel sector was the largest contributor to the 12-month decrease in the CPI at -5.9 per cent. The rent and fuel and power sectors also impacted strongly on the annual rate of inflation as price reductions in these sectors were 2.2 per cent and 1.5 per cent, respectively.”
Data was compiled by the Bermuda Government Department of Statistics.