Statistics NZ has attributed a rise in inflation in the June quarter to house prices & utilities.
In its quarterly consumers price index (CPI) release yesterday, Statistics NZ said the housing components rose 0.9% in the June quarter and 3.1% in the year to June.
The overall inflation rate rose from 1.1% in the year to March, to 1.5% in the year to June.
But overall, these shifts are small and the latest rises still leave inflation below the annual levels (measured quarterly) throughout 2017. Last year began with a 2.2% annual inflation rate in the March quarter, falling to 1.7% in June, rising to 1.9% in September and falling again to 1.6% in December.
The statisticians’ measure of overall inflation has been negligible in quarterly terms since a 2.3% rise in December 2010. In annual terms, the one time inflation has topped 2% since September 2011 was that March 2017 rise to 2.2%. As the global financial crisis that began in late 2007 bottomed out in 2010-11, the official inflation measures were 4% in the year to December 2010, followed by 3 quarters at 4.5%, 5.3% & 4.6%.
Comparing quarters with the previous quarter, the inflation rate for the latest quarter was 0.4%, down from 0.5% in March
Regions catching up in construction costs
Statistics NZ said construction prices in Auckland rose 0.6% in the June quarter, and 0.7% in Wellington. For the rest of the North Island, prices were up 1.2% – twice as much as the major centres.
- Rents rose 0.8% in the June quarter, 2.5% in the year
- Construction of new dwellings (excluding land) rose 1.1% this quarter, 3.9% in the year, and
- Electricity prices rose 1.7% this quarter, 2.9% in the year.
Statistics NZ prices senior manager Paul Pascoe said yesterday: “New Zealanders are paying more to keep their homes running, Rates, property maintenance services & home insurance are all higher than they were this time last year.”
Higher premiums, fire service & earthquake levies all contributed to an 18% increase in dwelling insurance in the June 2018 year.
Attribution: Statistics NZ tables & release.