CSO report that prices have fallen by 0.4% this July

The Central Statistics Office has announced that prices on average, as measured by the CPI, were 0.4% lower in July compared with July 2019.

The most notable changes in the year were decreases in Communications (-7.0%), Transport (-4.3%), Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas & Other Fuels (-2.2%) and Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages (-1.2%).  There were increases in Education (+4.1%), Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco (+3.5%), Health (+3.0%) and Miscellaneous Goods & Services (+1.8%).

Consumer Prices in July, as measured by the CPI, decreased by 0.2% in the month.  During July of last year, prices also fell by 0.2% in the month.  The most significant monthly price changes were decreases in Communications (-2.6%) and Transport (-1.9%).  There were increases in Furnishings, Household Equipment & Routine Household Maintenance (+0.8%) and Miscellaneous Goods & Services (+0.7%).

Contributions to the overall CPI – annual change

Table 17 shows the contribution of each 2-digit COICOP1 division to the overall change in the CPI.  A detailed breakdown of the individual components of each of the 12 COICOP divisions is presented in Tables 4 to 15.

The divisions which caused the largest downward contribution to the CPI in the year were Transport (-0.64%), Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas & Other Fuels (-0.28%), Communications (-0.19%) and Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages (-0.13%).

The divisions which caused the largest upward contribution to the CPI in the year were Restaurants & Hotels (+0.21%), Miscellaneous Goods & Services (+0.20%), Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco (+0.16%) and Recreation & Culture (+0.11%).

The main factors contributing to the annual change were as follows:

  • Transport fell mainly due a reduction in air fares and lower prices for petrol and diesel.  This decrease was partially offset by an increase in the cost of motor cars.
  • Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas & Other Fuels decreased primarily due to a reduction in the price of home heating oil, electricity, gas and lower rents.  This reduction was partially offset by higher mortgage interest repayments.
  • Communications fell due to a reduction in the cost of telephone & telefax equipment and telephone & telefax services.
  • Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages decreased due to lower prices across a range of products such as vegetables, sugar, jam, honey & chocolate and mineral waters, soft drinks, fruit & vegetable juices.
  • Restaurants & Hotels increased primarily due to higher prices for alcoholic drinks and food consumed in licensed premises, restaurants, cafes etc.  This increase was partially offset by a reduction in the cost of hotel accommodation.
  • Miscellaneous Goods & Services rose mainly due to higher health insurance premiums and higher prices for hairdressing salons & personal grooming establishments.  This increase was partially offset by lower motor insurance premiums.
  • Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco increased primarily due to higher prices for tobacco products.
  • Recreation & Culture rose mainly due to higher prices for package holidays and an increase in the cost of recreational and sporting services.

Contributions to the overall CPI – monthly change

The divisions which caused the largest downward contribution to the CPI in the month were Transport (-0.28%) and Restaurants & Hotels (-0.13%).  The divisions which caused the largest upward contribution in the month were Miscellaneous Goods & Services (+0.08%) and Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas & Other Fuels (+0.05%).

The main factors contributing to the monthly change were as follows:

  • Transport decreased primarily due to a reduction in air fares.  This decrease was partially offset by higher prices for petrol and diesel and an increase in the cost of services in respect of personal transport equipment.
  • Restaurants & Hotels fell due to a reduction in the cost of hotel accommodation.  This decrease was partially offset by higher prices for alcoholic drinks and food consumed in licensed premises, restaurants, cafes etc.  
  • Miscellaneous Goods & Services increased primarily due to higher prices for hairdressing salons & personal grooming establishments and an increase in the price of articles & products for personal care. 
  • Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas & Other Fuels rose mainly due to an increase in the price of home heating oil.

CPI sub-indices

The sub index for Services rose by 0.1% in the year to July, while Goods decreased by 1.2%.  Services, excluding mortgage interest repayments, remained unchanged in the year since July 2019.

The CPI excluding tobacco decreased by 0.2% in the month of July and fell by 0.6% in the year.  The CPI excluding mortgage interest decreased by 0.3% in the month and fell by 0.5% in the year.

Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices

Prices on average, as measured by the EU Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (HICP), decreased by 0.6% compared with July 2019.

The most notable changes in the year were decreases in Communications (-6.9%), Transport (-4.6%), Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas & Other Fuels (-3.4%) and Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages (-1.3%).  There were increases in Health (+4.0%), Education (+4.0%), Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco (+3.5%) and Clothing & Footwear (+1.5%).

The HICP decreased by 0.2% in the month.  This compares to a decrease of 0.2% recorded in July of last year.

The most significant monthly price changes were decreases in Communications (-2.6%) and Transport (-2.2%).  There were increases in Health (+3.0%) and Miscellaneous Goods & Services (+1.3%).

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