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Rising cost of healthcare pushes up inflation

The cost of healthcare was again the main reason for a rise in inflation, a report released today shows.

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) showed that inflation in June was running at 2.8 percent, up from the 2.5 percent in May.

According to the CPI report: “The health and personal care sector was the largest contributor to the year-over-year increase in the Consumer Price Index. This sector has been the leading contributor since September 2010 due to the rising average costs of health insurance premiums and prescription drugs.

“On average, the cost of Health and Personal Care items increased 7.5 percent since June last year. The fuel and rent sectors also impacted strongly on the annual rate of inflation, as price shifts in these sectors were 11.1 percent and 1.6 percent, respectively.”

By sector:

Fuel and Power

The Fuel & Power sector increased 2.8 percent, due to an increase in the fuel adjustment clause. Consumers also paid 3.1 per ent more for a cylinder of gas.

Household Goods, Services & Communications

The Household Goods, Services & Communications sector climbed 1.2 percent in June. This was largely attributed to a 21.9 percent increase in the cost of care services at rest homes.

Food

On average, food prices rose 0.5 per cent in June. Among the main items contributing to the increase were the cost of oranges (+5.1 percent), hotdogs (+4.4 percent) and cookies (+3.8 percent).

Rent

The Rent sector increased 0.1 percent, reflecting a 0.2 percent rise in average rents for controlled properties.

Health & Personal Care

The Health & Personal Care sector edged up 0.1 percent in June. This resulted from a 2.8 percent price increase for prescribed medicines.

Tobacco & Liquor

The Tobacco & Liquor sector increased by 0.2 percent. The average cost of beer increased 0.5 percent, while the cost of spirits fell by 0.1 percent.

Clothing & Footwear

The Clothing & Footwear sector was unchanged in June.

Education, Recreation & Reading

The Education, Recreation & Reading sector declined 0.4 percent in June. This was due to a 5.3 percent decrease in the cost of magazines and a 4.3 percent decline in the cost of boating fuel.

Transport & Vehicles

The Transport & Vehicles sector fell 0.4 percent in June. Hotel room rates and fuel prices fell by 7.0 percent and 4.3 percent, respectively. In contrast, airfare costs increased as average prices climbed by 21.7 percent.

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Published August 12, 2011 at 5:43 pm (Updated August 12, 2011 at 5:42 pm)

Rising cost of healthcare pushes up inflation

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