CPI up 1.5% in August supported by growth in furnishings, household equipment

By S BIRRUNTHA / Pic By BERNAMA

MALAYSIA’S Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 1.5% year-on-year (YoY) in August 2019 to 121.8 against 120 in the same month of the preceding year.

Statistics Department chief statistician Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin (picture) said furnishings, household equipment and routine household maintenance index recorded the highest growth at 2.3% compared to the same month last year.

“Other sectors which had also showed an increase are food and non-alcoholic beverages (2.6%), alcoholic beverages and tobacco (2.5%), and miscellaneous goods and services (2.5%).

“The recreation services and culture, as well as communication index also increased 2.3% and 2.2% respectively,” Mohd Uzir said in a statement yesterday.

He added that the items that showed decline were clothing and footwear (-1.1%) and transport (-2.9%).

“Whereas, on a monthly basis, the CPI rose 0.2% compared to July 2019.

“The increase was supported by the index of housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels which recorded the highest at 0.5%.

“Food and non-alcoholic beverages, health, restaurants and hotels sectors also rose 0.2% respectively,” he said.

Based on the statement, the overall CPI for the period of January to August 2019 registered an increase of 0.5% compared to the same period a year ago.

Meanwhile, the index for subgroups food and non-alcoholic beverages increased 2.6% in August 2019 compared to the same month in the previous year.

According to Mohd Uzir, the increase was attributed to the food sub-group index of milk and eggs (3.4%), vegetables (3.2%) and fruits (1.7%).

“Among the goods which recorded price increase in most states were garlic (16.3%), fresh green chilli (15.2%), tomatoes (14.5%), cockles (14.1%), yoghurt (13.7%), fresh red chilli (13.3%) and round cabbage (11.7%).

“The index for ‘food away from home’ registered an increase of 4.4% in August 2019 versus August 2018.

“The rise in the prices of burger, fried chicken, pizza and seafood (other than fish) contributed to the increase of the index of this subgroup,” he said.

The food items that recorded the lowest index were oils and fats, as well as sugar, jam, honey, chocolate and confectionery.

For the states, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur (KL), Pulau Pinang, Selangor, Wilayah Persekutuan Putrajaya and Perak surpassed the national CPI rate of 1.5% in August 2019 versus August 2018.

The increase in percentage were KL (2.4%), Pulau Pinang (2.0%), Selangor (1.8%), Putrajaya (1.8%) and Perak (1.6%).

Sabah and Sarawak recorded the lowest at 0.7% respectively for the overall CPI.

Mohd Uzir said all the states registered an increase in the index of food and non-alcoholic beverages.

“The two states that recorded the highest increase for the food and non-alcoholic beverages segment were KL (4.7%) and Pulau Pinang (3.1%).

“The increase surpassed the national index of food and non-alcoholic beverages in August 2019,” he said.

In July 2019, it was noted that the CPI increased 1.4% to 121.5 against 119.8 recorded in July 2018.