Consumer Price Index increases by 1.5 percent in July

Samoa’s Consumer Price Index (C.P.I.) for July 2019 increased by 1.5 percent compared to the previous month, according to the Samoa Bureau of Statistics.

In the Bureau’s monthly C.P.I. report for July, it said the increase was mainly because of the 5.0 percent increase in the housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuel index. 

Food and non-alcoholic drink beverages index also registered an increase of 3.2 percent while furnishing, household equipment and maintenance, alcoholic beverages and tobacco, and miscellaneous goods and services indices showed increases of 1.6, 1.4 and 0.3 percent respectively.  

Decreases were registered for clothing and footwear index with 3.8 percent, which reflected the lower prices recorded for school uniforms; and transport index down by 3.0 percent reflecting the decreased prices recorded for petrol and air fare for Apia-Auckland-Apia.  

No changes were recorded for health, communication, recreation, education and restaurant indices. 

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The local goods components of the Consumer Price Index registered an increase of 1.7 percent when compared to the previous month. This increase is due to higher prices recorded for treated water, local food and cigarette. 

Increased prices for imported food, washing powder, washing soap and batteries resulted in the 1.4 percent increase in the imported goods component. 

Higher prices recorded for chicken leg quarter, sausage, corned beef, taro, fresh fish, cucumber and taamu affected the 3.2 percent increase in the food and non-alcoholic beverages index.  

Furnishing, household, equipment and maintenance index recorded an increase of 1.6 percent as a result of the rise in prices of washing powder, washing soap and batteries. 

The 1.4 percent increase in the alcoholic beverages and tobacco index was a result of the higher prices recorded for cigarettes, beer and Samoan ava. 

The average inflation rate for the year ended July 2019 was 1.7 percent. For the 12 months ending July 2018, the inflation rate was 4.2 percent. 

An official at the Bureau, who did not wished to be named, said the 1.7 percent inflation rate indicates that Samoans are able to afford their basic needs when compared to the 4.2 percent for the same period last year.

The Samoa Central Bank in their monetary policy for financial year 2018/19 said the targeted annual average inflation rate is 3.0 percent. 

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