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The Central Statistics Office released figures for February 2011 Consumer Price Index. It stated that consumer prices in February, as measured by the CPI, increased by 0.9 percent in the month. This compares to an increase of 0.4 percent recorded in February of last year. Prices on average, as measured by the CPI, were 2.2 percent higher in February compared with February 2010. The EU Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (HICP) increased by 0.9 percent in the month, compared to an increase of 0.2 percent recorded in February of last year. Prices on average, as measured by the HICP, were 0.9 percent higher in February compared with February 2010.

The most notable changes in the year were increases in Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas & Other Fuels (+9.5 percent), Miscellaneous Goods & Services (+4.8 percent), Health (+4.1 percent) and Transport (+3.5 percent). There were decreases in Clothing & Footwear (-4.6 percent), Education (-2.9 percent) and Furnishings, Household Equipment & Routine Household Maintenance (-2.6 percent).

The annual rate of inflation for Services was 2.8 percent in the year to February, while Goods increased by 1.4 percent. The most significant monthly price changes were increases in Clothing & Footwear (+6.5 percent), Miscellaneous Goods & Services (+3.8 percent) and Furnishings, Household Equipment & Routine Household Maintenance (+1.8 percent). There was a decrease in Health (-0.6 percent).

The main factors contributing to the monthly change were as follows:

  • Clothing & Footwear and Furnishings, Household Equipment & Routine Household Maintenance prices increased due to a recovery in prices following the traditional winter sales.
  • Miscellaneous Goods & Services rose mainly due to increases in health insurance premiums.
  • Health fell due to a reduction in prices for prescribed drugs.