The largest upward contribution to the CPI came from: housing, water, electricity, gas & other fuels (2.9 percent vs 4.0 percent) mainly due to higher rents and mortgage interest repayments in addition to an increase in the price of gas; restaurants & hotels (2.0 percent vs 2.3 percent) primarily due to higher prices for alcoholic drinks and food consumed in licensed premises, restaurants, cafes etc; alcoholic beverages & tobacco (3.1 percent vs 3.3 percent) mainly due to higher prices for tobacco products; and miscellaneous goods & services (1.2 percent vs 0.2 percent) primarily due to higher health insurance premiums and higher prices for hairdressing salons and personal grooming establishments.
By contrast, prices fell for furnishings, household equipment & routine household maintenance (-4.0 percent vs -3.8 percent) mainly due to the reduced cost of furniture & furnishings, non-durable household goods and household textiles; communications (-6.3 percent vs -6.8 percent) due to a reduction in the cost of telephone & telefax equipment and telephone & telefax services; clothing & footwear (-1.6 percent, the same as in July) due to sales; and transport (-0.3 percent vs -1.2 percent) due to a reduction in airfares and lower prices for petrol and diesel.
Annual core inflation, which excludes energy and unprocessed food, picked up to 0.9 percent in August from 0.6 percent in July.
On a monthly basis, consumer prices rose 0.5 percent in August, reversing a 0.2 percent fall in July, as costs increased for clothing & footwear (5.4 percent), miscellaneous goods & services (0.9 percent), restaurants & hotels (0.4 percent) and health (0.4 percent).
The harmonized index of consumer prices rose 0.6 percent from the previous year (vs 0.5 percent in July); and 0.4 percent month-over-month (vs -0.2 percent in July).