January 30, 2009


The Consumer Price Index registered a 0.4 percent decrease during the month of November 2008. The “All Items” index stood at 134.4, compared with 135.0 for October 2008. The “point-to-point” inflation rate was recorded at 8.7 percent.{{more}}

During the month, three (3) groups recorded decreases, namely: – “Fuel & Light (4.0 percent), “Education” (0.9 percent) and “Food” (0.5 percent). Four (4) groups showed increases – “Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco (3.9 percent), “Personal Services” (0.2 percent), Household Furniture & Supplies” (0.1 percent) and “Housing” (0.04 percent). The groups “Clothing & Footwear”, “Medical Care”, Transportation & Communication” and “Miscellaneous” remained unchanged.

The 4.0 percent decline in the “Fuel & Light” index was due to a 9.5 percent decrease in the cost of electricity. This was a result of a lower fuel surcharge rate of 44.7 cents per kilowatt hour for the month of November 2008, compared to 54.6 cents per kilowatt for the month of October 2008. The .09 percent reduction in the “Education” index is due to a 4.3 percent decrease in the price of a mathematics text.

The 0.5 percent decrease in the “Food” group is due to a decrease in several items:- eddoes (36.4 percent), plantains (17.8 percent), eggplant (12.6 percent), dasheen (12.2 percent), limes (9.7 percent), oranges (9.3 percent), English potato (7.0 percent), chicken wings (6.6 percent), turkey wings (5.6 percent), rice – packaged (4.5 percent), cornflakes (3.9 percent), flour – loose (3.0 percent), chicken – whole (2.7 percent), milk – condensed (2.3 percent), milk – powdered (full cream) (1.4 percent), rice – loose (1.1 percent).

The “Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco” group rose by 3.9 percent due to an increase in the price for local rum (24.0 percent), port wine (1.4 percent) and local beer (0.8 percent). The “Personal Services” group grew by 0.2 percent due to an increase of 13.7 percent and 2.4 percent in the price of razor blades and toilet paper respectively. The increase of 0.1 percent in the group “Household Furniture & Supplies” is accounted for by the increase in the price of dishwashing liquid (1.7 percent, and light bulb (0.6 percent). An increase of 2 percent in the cost of emulsion paint accounts for the 0.04 percent increase in the “Housing” group.