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CPI Annual Inflation Rises to 4.0 Percent

Embargoed until 10:45am – 17 July 2006

CPI Annual Inflation Rises to 4.0 Percent

The annual inflation rate, as measured by the Consumers Price Index (CPI), increased 4.0 percent for the year to the June 2006 quarter, up from 3.3 percent for the year to the March 2006 quarter, Statistics New Zealand said today. On a quarterly basis, the CPI increased 1.5 percent in the June 2006 quarter, following a 0.6 percent increase in the March 2006 quarter.

The most significant contribution to the CPI this quarter came from the transportation group (up 5.5 percent), driven by higher prices for petrol (up 14.7 percent) and international air travel (up 7.1 percent). For the year to the June 2006 quarter, prices for petrol and international air travel increased 32.2 percent and 8.7 percent, respectively.

The annual increase for petrol is the largest since the June 1985 quarter, when petrol prices increased 35.4 percent. If petrol prices had remained unchanged from the June 2005 quarter, the annual increase in the CPI would have been 2.9 percent.

The housing group rose 1.2 percent in the June 2006 quarter, with prices for the purchase and construction of new dwellings up 1.4 percent. For the year to the June 2006 quarter, prices for the purchase and construction of new dwellings increased 5.0 percent.

Geoff Bascand
Acting Government Statistician

ENDS

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