Monthly inflation rate of 0.5% for July 2020

August 19, 2020

Consumer Price Index – July 2020

The consumer price index for July 2020 was 105.7 resulting in an inflation rate of 0.5% increase when compared to previous month’s 105.2 price index, according to the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN). This increase was as result of, ‘Food and Non- Alcoholic Beverages’, the heaviest weighted division booked 1.2% increase in its index. Notably, STATIN stated, “The groups ‘Food’ and ‘Non-Alcoholic Beverages’ recorded increases of 1.3% and 0.6%, respectively.”

The division of ‘Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels’, recorded a 0.5% decrease due to lower electricity rates for the period in review, which offset the upward movement of the inflation rate. However, the overall movement in the index was influenced by an increase of 0.6% in each of index for the ‘Personal Care, Social Protection and Miscellaneous Goods’ and ‘Furnishings, Household Equipment and Routine Household Maintenance’ division. Also, the ‘Restaurants and Accommodation Services’ division index rose 0.3%, while, ‘Transport’ division increased by 0.2% as a result of price increase for fuels and higher cost for air travel. Inflation within the Greater Kingston Metropolitan Area, Rural Areas and Other Urban Centres each recorded an inflation rate of 0.5%, 0.4% and 0.6%, respectively for July 2020.

The index for the ‘Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages’ division was 1.2% increase in its index for July 2020. The ‘Food’ group index recorded 1.3% and the ‘Non-Alcoholic Beverages’ group went up by 0.6%. As it relates to the increase in the ‘Food’ division, STATIN noted, “The upward movement in the index for the group ‘Food’ continued to be impacted by the rise in costs for agricultural produce, namely, yellow yam, tomato and cabbage which resulted in a 3.1 per cent rise in the index for the class ‘Vegetables, tubers, plantains, cooking bananas and pulses’.” Additionally, ‘Cereal and cereal products’ and ‘Fruits and Nuts’ went up by 0.8% and 1.1%, respectively. Also, ‘Meat and other parts of slaughtered land animals’ and ‘Fish and Seafood’ were up by 0.7% and 0.9%, respectively. All three classes increased for the ‘Non-Alcoholic Beverages’; that is, ‘Water, Soft drinks and Other Non-Alcoholic Beverages’, ‘Coffee, Tea and Cocoa’ and ‘Fruit and Vegetable Juices’ by 0.7%, 0.5% and 0.3% respectively.

The division with ‘Alcoholic Beverages, Tobacco and Narcotics’ increased by 0.4% for July 2020, due to a 0.4% increase in ‘Alcoholic Beverages’ and 0.2% in ‘Tobacco’. While, the division for ‘Clothing and Footwear’ observed an increase of 0.8% in its index for July 2020. In the index the group ‘Clothing’ registered growth of 0.9% and ‘Footwear’ climbed by 0.4% for July 2020.

The index for the ‘Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels’ division recorded a 0.5% decrease in its index for July 2020. The fall in the rates for electricity caused a 1.6% drop in the index for the group ‘Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels’. However, this was offset by a 0.2% increase in index for the group ‘Maintenance, Repair and Security of the Dwelling’ as stated by STATIN.

There was a 0.6% increase in the index for ‘Furnishings, Household Equipment and Routine Household Maintenance. This was mainly due to the 0.6% rise in the index for the group ‘Goods and Services for Routine Household Maintenance’. Additionally, STATIN noted, “All other groups in the division also registered increases in their index notably: ‘Furniture, Furnishing, and Loose Carpets’ by 0.8%, ‘Tools and Equipment for House and Garden’ by 0.6% and ‘Household Appliances’ by 0.4%.”

The division for ‘Health’ recorded an increase of 0.3% in its index for July 2020. This resulted mainly from the ‘Medicines and Health Products’ and ‘Out Patient Care Services’ groups which both increased by 0.3%.

The index for the divisions ‘Transport’ increased by 0.2%. This was largely due to the 0.2 per cent increase in the index for the group ‘Operation of Personal Transport Equipment’. The 0.3 per cent rise in the index for the class ‘Fuels and Lubricants for Personal Transport Equipment’ was the main contributor.

The ‘Restaurants and Accommodation’ division registered a 0.3% rise for July 2020 due to an increase in ‘Accommodation Services’ by 1.5%  and a 0.3% rise in ‘Food and Beverage Serving Services’. Lastly, the division for ‘Personal Care, Social Protection and Miscellaneous Goods and Services’ produced an increase of 0.6% for July 2020 which was a result of the upward movements of prices of some personal care products such as bath soap, toothpaste, toil paper and shampoo.

The movement in the index for calendar year to date inflation was 3.2%, fiscal year-to-date was 1.9% and the point- to -point was 5.7%. Individual divisions saw the following changes:

  1. Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages: (1.2%)
  2. Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco: (0.4%)
  3. Clothing and Footwear: (0.8%)
  4. Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels: (-0.5%)
  5. Furnishing, Household Equipment and Routine Household Maintenance: (0.6%)
  6. Health: (0.3%)
  7. Transport: (0.2%)
  8. Information and Communication: (0.0%)
  9. Recreation, Sport and Culture: (0.2%)
  10. Education: (0.0%)
  11. Restaurants and Accommodation Services: (0.3%)
  12. Insurance and Financial Services (0.0%)
  13. Personal Care, Social Protection and Miscellaneous Goods and Services: (0.6%)



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