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CPI Inflation Eases

18 January 2006

CPI Inflation Eases

The Consumers Price Index (CPI) increased 0.7 percent in the December 2005 quarter, following a 1.1 percent increase in the September quarter, Statistics New Zealand said today. For the year to the December 2005 quarter, the CPI increased 3.2 percent, compared with a 3.4 percent increase for the year to the September quarter.

The most significant contribution to the CPI this quarter came from the housing group (up 1.2 percent), with prices for the purchase and construction of new dwellings up 1.6 percent. For the year to the December 2005 quarter, prices for the purchase and construction of new dwellings increased 6.4 percent and made the most significant individual contribution to the annual movement in the CPI.

Transportation prices were up 1.0 percent in the December 2005 quarter, with the most significant contribution coming from higher prices for international air travel (up 12.3 percent). The most significant downward contribution came from lower prices for petrol (down 3.0 percent). Conversely, for the year to the December 2005 quarter, prices for international air travel fell 3.2 percent, while petrol prices were up 17.4 percent.

Food prices increased 0.5 percent in the December 2005 quarter, with the meat, fish and poultry subgroup (up 2.9 percent) making the most significant contribution. For the year to the December 2005 quarter, food prices were up 1.5 percent.

Brian Pink

Government Statistician

ENDS

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