Inflation rate holds steady
Consumers paid 2.5 per cent more in February than they did a year ago for the basket of goods and services included in the Consumer Price Index, the Ministry of Economy and Labour reported today.
This level of inflation was the same as the January annual inflation rate.
In a summary of the February CPI from the Department of Statistics, the transport and foreign travel sector continued to be the largest contributor to the 12-month increase in the CPI (+9.4 per cent).
On average, annual increases were reported in the cost of premium fuels (+13.9 per cent) and mixed fuels (+12.9 per cent).
The food sector and the education, recreation, education and reading sector also strongly impact the annual rate of inflation, as price shifts in these sectors were 5 per cent and 3.2 per cent, respectively.
Goods in the food sector such as fresh and frozen lamb leg (+13.8 per cent), frozen green beans (+10.8 per cent) and rice (+9.8 per cent) reported notable annual average increases.
Within the education, recreation, education and reading sector, annual average increases were reported in the cost of pleasure boats (+20 per cent), and the cost of movie theatres and shows (+9.1 per cent).
Year-over-year, the health and personal care sector advanced 3.3 per cent as the annual average cost of health insurance jumped 4.7 per cent.
On an annual basis, the household goods, services and supplies sector rose 1.5 per cent as increases were reported in the average cost of dining room furniture (+30.3 per cent) and bedroom furniture (+14.7 per cent).
Between January and February this year, the average cost of goods and services in the CPI rose 0.4 per cent.
The all-items index increased from 108.6 to 109, meaning that the basket of goods and services that cost $100 in April 2015 now costs $109.
The transport and foreign travel sector climbed 2.2 per cent in February due to increases in the average cost of premium fuels (+4.9 per cent) mixed fuels (+4.6 per cent), and cars (+0.8 per cent).
On average, food prices advanced 0.6 per cent in February. Among the main items contributing to the increase were eggs (+3.1 per cent), fresh milk (+1.9 per cent) and spices (+1.6 per cent).
The combined increases in the average cost of pleasure boats (+3.5 per cent), personal computers (+1.3 per cent) and televisions (+0.7 per cent) led to a 0.4 per cent increase in the education, recreation, entertainment and reading sector.
The household goods, services and supplies sector increased 0.1 per cent for the month. Price increases were reported in the average cost of washers and dryers (+5.3 per cent), stoves (+4.9 per cent) and refrigerators (+2.8 per cent).
The rent sector was static as the average cost of properties subject to rent control rose by 0.1 per cent.
Despite the 0.3 per cent increase in self-prescribed medicines and household medical supplies, the health and personal care sector was unchanged.
The tobacco and liquor sector was up 0.1 per cent as consumers on average paid 0.6 per cent more for wines.
The clothing and footwear sector reported no price movement for the month.
Following a 2 per cent decrease in January, the fuel and power sector was unchanged in February.