Consumer Price Index- October 2018

Date: November 16, 2018

Consumer Price Index – October 2018

The consumer price index for the month of October 2018 increased 0.7%, following the 1.1% increase in September 2018, according to The Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN). The Consumer Price Index for the month of October advanced to 257.4, relative to the 255.6 reported for September 2018. This increase was largely attributed to the movement in the division, ‘Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages’ up by 1.7% but however tempered by ‘Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels’’ which declined by 1.3%. Inflation within the Greater Kingston Metropolitan Area and Other Urban Centres each registered increase in their respective index of 1.1% and 0.6% respectively, while the index for Rural Areas increased by 0.4%.

The index for the ‘Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages’ division recorded a 1.7% increase in its index for October 2018, following a 0.9% upward movement for September 2018. This resulted from the upward movements within the ‘Food’ and ‘Non-Alcoholic Beverages’ groups by 1.8% and 0.1% respectively. Within the ‘Food’ group, the class ‘Vegetables and Starchy Foods’ increased 5.6% due to due to higher prices for agriculture produce such as cabbage, lettuce, carrot, yam and potato. The class ‘Fruits’ increased by 1.2% followed by a 0.5% upward movement for ‘Sugar, Jam, Honey, Chocolate and Confectionery’. ‘Meat’, ‘Oils and Fats’ and ‘Food Products’  each advanced 0.3%. Within the ‘Non-Alcoholic Beverages’ group the classes ‘Mineral Waters, Soft Drinks, Fruit and Vegetable Juices’ and ‘Coffee, Tea, and Cocoa’ each recorded increases of 0.1% respectively.

The index for the ‘Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels’ division however recorded a 1.3% decline in its index for October 2018, following a 4.6% upward movement for September 2018. This was a result of the group ‘Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels’ registering a decline of 2.5% in its index. According to STATIN, this movement was “the reduction in the rates for electricity.” This movement was however tempered by the group ‘Water Supply and Miscellaneous Services Related to the Dwelling’ increasing 0.5% due to increased water and sewage rates.

The indexes for the divisions ‘Alcoholic Beverages’ and ‘Clothing and Footwear’ each recorded increases of 0.3% .The former was attributed to the classes ‘Spirits’ and ‘Wines’, while the upward movement for the index ‘Clothing and Footwear’ was influenced by the groups ‘Clothing’ and ‘Footwear’ increasing 0.3% and 0.2% respectively.

The division ‘Furnishings, Household Equipment & Routine Household Maintenance’, ‘Health’ and ‘Miscellaneous Goods and Services’ all recorded increases of 0.1% for October 2018. Within the division ‘Furnishings, Household Equipment & Routine Household Maintenance’, the groups ‘Glassware, Tableware and Household Utensils’ advanced 0.2%, while the other groups ‘Furniture and Furnishings’, ’Household Textiles’, Tools and Equipment for House and Garden’ and ‘Goods and Services for Routine Household Maintenance’ increased 0.1%. The division ‘Health’ which also recorded an increase of 0.1% was influenced mainly by a 0.3% increase in the group ‘Medical Products, Appliances and Equipment’. Lastly, the upward movement in the division ‘Miscellaneous Goods and Services’ was due to the, “increase in the cost of personal care services and products”.

The division ‘Transport’ recorded an increase of 0.5%, while the division ‘Restaurants and Accommodation Services’ recorded an increase of 0.4%. For the ‘Transport’ division, the upward movement was mainly attributable to the, “increased price for petrol along with higher airfares”, while the increase in the division ‘Restaurants and Accommodation Services’ was attributed to, “ increase prices for meals consumed away from home”.

Notably, the other divisions ‘Communication’, ‘Education’, and ‘Recreation and Culture’ had no effect on the index for October 2018.

The Inflation rate year to date is 3.5%, while the point-to-point rate (October 2017 – October 2018) and fiscal year 2018/ 2019 was 4.7% and 3.8% respectively. Individual divisions saw the following changes:

  1. Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages: (1.7%)
  2. Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco: (0.3%)
  3. Clothing and Footwear: (0.3%)
  4. Housing, Water, Electricity, gas and Other Fuels: (-1.3%)
  5. Furnishing, Household Equipment and Routine Household Maintenance: (0.1%)
  6. Health: (0.1%)
  7. Transport: (0.5%)
  8. Communication: (0.0%)
  9. Recreation and Culture: (0.0%)
  10. Education: (0.0%)
  11. Restaurants and Accommodation Services: (0.4%)
  12. Miscellaneous Goods and services: (0.1%)


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