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Financial News: Australia Inflation Highest In 21 Years

Australia Inflation Highest In 21 Years

07/27/2022 - 01:24:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - Australia consumer price inflation reached its highest level since 2001 on high dwelling and auto fuel prices, the latest data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics showed on Wednesday.

Consumer price inflation accelerated to 6.1 percent in the second quarter from 5.1 percent in the first quarter. A similar higher rate was last seen in the second quarter of 2001. Inflation was forecast to advance to 6.2 percent.

The annual increase in the CPI was the largest since the introduction of the goods and services tax, the ABS said.

Despite a pick-up in inflation over the second quarter, it was not as strong as expected, Marcel Thieliant, an economist at Capital Economics said.

That suggests that the Reserve Bank of Australia may opt for another 50 basis point rate hike at next week's meeting rather than the 75 basis point previously anticipated, the economist added.

The most significant contributor to the high inflation was new dwelling costs, which was up 20.3 percent, the strongest since the series commenced in the June 1999 quarter.

At the same time, automotive fuel prices surged 32.1 percent. Fuel prices increased following an oil price shock caused by the Russian invasion of Ukraine last quarter, coupled with ongoing easing of COVID-19 restrictions strengthening global demand.

On a quarterly basis, consumer prices gained 1.8 percent, following a 2.1 percent rise in the previous quarter. Economists had forecast a quarterly growth of 1.9 percent.

The statistical office said goods accounted for 79 percent of the rise in the CPI this quarter, reflecting high freight costs, supply constraints and prolonged strong demand.

Annual trimmed mean inflation, which excludes large price rises and falls, increased to 4.9 percent, the highest since the ABS first published the series in 2003. Trimmed mean inflation increased to 1.5 percent sequentially in the second quarter.

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