Inflation surges to 13-year high as transport, bread, oil and meat prices rise

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Annual consumer inflation jumped to 7.4% in June from 6.5% in May, mainly driven by rising transport and food prices.

Fuel prices were up by 45.3% in June, representing the largest annual increase for fuel since the current CPI series began in 2009. Stock photo.
Image: jarun/123rf

Stats SA said on Wednesday the annual rate rose during 2021 and continued its upward trajectory in the first half of 2022. Many countries around the globe have experienced rising inflation in recent months, making it a hot topic for debate, particularly in the area of monetary policy.

Prices of food and nonalcoholic beverages increased by 8.6% year-on-year in June. This is the highest annual rate for food and beverages since March 2017 when the country was recovering from severe drought.

The main groups contributing to high food inflation were bread and cereals, meat and oils and fats.

Bread and cereal products recorded an annual rate of 11.2%, up from 8.4% in May. The monthly increase was 2.6% with notable price rises for maize meal (5.2%), brown bread (3.2%) and macaroni (3%).

Meat prices increased by 9.5% in the 12 months to June, slightly higher than 9.4% recorded in May. Large price increases are widespread across the group, with polony recording the highest annual increase (19%).

The index for oils and fats registered an annual increase of 32.5% compared with 26.9% in May. This product group has seen sustained levels of high inflation, with annual increases above 20% since May 2021.

Transport goods and services recorded an average annual price increase of 20% and a monthly rise of 4.2%. Fuel prices were up by 45.3% in June, representing the largest annual increase for fuel since the CPI series began in 2009.

Fuel is not the only component in the transport product group experiencing significant price increases, Stats SA said. Used vehicle prices have climbed since May 2020 (recording an annual rate of -2.9%) to reach 11.1% in June. Public transport prices increased by 14.3% from June 2021 and 4.3% from May 2022. Monthly increases were recorded for taxi fares (2.7%), airfares (7.1%) and long-distance buses (11.7%).

TimesLIVE

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