Jan inflation up 2.4%

Overall consumer prices rose 2.4% in January year-on-year, a larger increase than 2% in December 2022, the Census & Statistics Department announced today.


Netting out the effects of the Government’s one-off relief measures, the underlying inflation rate was 2.4%, also larger than December’s 2%.


Compared with last December, price increases were recorded for electricity, gas and water; basic food; clothing and footwear; meals out and takeaway food; miscellaneous services; miscellaneous goods; transport; and alcoholic drinks and tobacco.


On the other hand, a year-on-year decrease in price was recorded for durable goods and housing.


The Government noted that the underlying consumer price inflation rate picked up to 2.4% last month partly due to the early arrival of the Lunar New Year this year. Hence, it would be more meaningful to examine the figures for January and February combined to assess the underlying inflation situation.


The increase in food prices accelerated. Prices of energy-related items soared further and those of clothing and footwear continued to increase visibly. Nevertheless, price pressures on other major inflation components remained broadly in check.


Going forward, domestic cost pressures may increase alongside the economic recovery. External price pressures will likely remain notable, the Government said, adding that overall inflation would face some upward pressure, but should remain moderate in the near term.