Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 

Annual inflation at 1.1 percent as education prices fall

Annual inflation at 1.1 percent as education prices fall

19 April 2018

The consumers price index (CPI) rose 0.5 percent in the March 2018 quarter, Stats NZ said today. The annual inflation rate was 1.1 percent, down from 1.6 percent in the year ended December 2017.

Government-influenced price changes affected the annual figure, with higher cigarette and tobacco prices being countered by cheaper tertiary education.

The annual tobacco tax increase on 1 January 2018 lifted quarterly inflation, with prices up 10 percent.

"The average price for packet of 25 cigarettes was $35.14 in March, compared with $31.68 last December," prices senior manager Paul Pascoe said.

Higher prices for accommodation services and petrol also contributed to the quarterly CPI rise, but they were slightly offset by seasonal falls for international airfares.

Tertiary education policy takes effect

Prices for tertiary education fell 16 percent in the March 2018 quarter.

This is the first time this series has fallen since 2003; it was due to the introduction of the Government's fee-free first year policy.

The policy applies for all New Zealand secondary students finishing school from 2017 onwards, and adults who previously studied for less than half a full-time year of tertiary education or industry training.

Housing-related costs lead annual inflation

Housing and household utility prices increased 3.1 percent in the March 2018 year, led by construction and rents.

Construction prices increased 4.7 percent in the year, and 0.4 percent in the quarter. This was the smallest quarterly rise since the March 2011 quarter.

“Rising building prices in Auckland and Wellington have begun to slow. Both were up 0.3 percent in the latest quarter,” Mr Pascoe said. “For Auckland, this is the smallest rise since December 2012.”

Construction in Canterbury fell 1.1 percent in the March quarter as the market continued to cool.

Housing rentals increased 2.1 percent in the March 2018 year. Regionally, Wellington rents increased 4.2 percent, while Auckland increased 2.5 percent and Canterbury rents decreased 1.5 percent.

“Wellington rents were up 1.8 percent in the March 2018 quarter, while nationally they rose just 0.6 percent,” Mr Pascoe said.

“The average quarterly rent rise reflects many tenants not having an increase, as well as those facing higher costs.”

Nationally, around 80 percent of properties surveyed had no price change in the March 2018 quarter.

Video about Consumers price index: March 2018 quarter

View our video Consumers price index: March 2018 quarter
Ends


Authorised by Liz MacPherson, Government Statistician, 19 April 2018.

For more information about these statistics:

• Visit Consumers price index: March 2018 quarter

• See CSV files for download

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Retail: International Websites To Pay GST

New rules would be aimed at imported goods valued at or below $1,000. Customs would retain responsibility for collecting GST on imported parcels valued more than $1,000. More>>

ALSO:

High-Level Advice: PM’s Business Advisory Council Membership Announced

The Prime Minister’s Business Advisory Council brings together a mix of experts, six women and seven men with small to large business experience, from across New Zealand, to provide advice. More>>

ALSO:

Improving: Report Shows New Zealand Air Quality 'Good'

Our air 2018, produced by the Ministry for the Environment and Stats NZ, shows that while some previously known issues persist, progress has been made and levels of some pollutants are declining. More>>

ALSO:

Greenpeace: Govt Extends OMV Exploration Permit

The Government has just granted oil giant OMV a two-year extension to drill in the Great South Basin, despite issuing a ban on new oil and gas exploration permits in April. More>>

ALSO:

Collective Bargaining For Contractors: Working Group's Model For Screen Sector

A recommended model to allow collective bargaining for contractors in the screen sector has today been unveiled by the Government-convened Film Industry Working Group. More>>

ALSO:

Kauri Dieback: DOC Closing Tracks To Protect Trees

The Department of Conservation will close 21 tracks across kauri land to help prevent the spread of kauri dieback. An additional 10 tracks will also be partially closed and the open sections upgraded... More>>