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August inflation inches up

BY: Jessica Acheampong

Inflation, which measures the average change in the general price level of goods and services, inched up marginally to 16.9 per cent in August 2016. The rate was 0.2 percentage points higher than the 16.7 per cent recorded in July 2016.

The monthly change rate for August 2016 was -0.6 per cent compared to the 0.9 per cent recorded for July 2016. 

Announcing the rate at a news conference in Accra, the Government Statistician, Dr Philomena Nyarko, said the marginal increase was as a result of an increase in the non-food component of the inflation basket and inflation on imported goods during the period under review.

Inflation on imported goods increased from 15.2 per cent in July 2016 to 17.3 per cent in August 2016. 

Components of inflation

The food and non-alcoholic beverages group recorded a year-on-year inflation rate of 8.5 per cent. This is 0.1 percentage point lower than the 8.6 per cent recorded in July 2016.

“Six subgroups of the food and non-alcoholic beverages group recorded inflation rates higher than the group’s average rate of 8.5 per cent. The price drivers for the food inflation rate were vegetables (11.5 per cent), mineral water, soft drinks, fruit and vegetable juices (10.6 per cent), oils and fats (10.1 per cent), coffee, tea and cocoa (9.7 per cent), meat and meat products (9.6 per cent) and fruits (9.1 per cent),” she said.

The non-food group recorded a year-on-year inflation rate of 21.5 per cent in August 2016, compared to the 21.2 per cent recorded for July 2016. Six subgroups recorded year-on-year inflation rates higher than the groups’ average rate of 21.5 per cent. 

“Education recorded the highest inflation rate of 34.1 per cent, followed by housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels with 28.1 per cent; transport with 27.4 per cent, recreation and culture with 27.2 per cent, clothing and footwear with 22.8 per cent and furnishings, household equipment and routine maintenance with 22.0 per cent.

Regional differentials

At the regional level, the year-on-year inflation rate ranged from 11.8 per cent in the Upper East Region to 20.1 per cent in the Greater Accra Region. 

According to Dr Nyarko, the Greater Accra Region recorded the highest year-on-year inflation rate of 20.1 per cent, followed by the Ashanti Region with 18.5 per cent, while the Upper East Region recorded the lowest rate of 11.8 per cent.