Aus inflation rate falls to equal-lowest level in over 18 months

Canberra, Nov 29 (IANS): Australia's rate of inflation has fallen to its equal-lowest level in over 18 months, official data revealed on Wednesday.

According to figures published by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) , the consumer price index (CPI) rose by 4.9 per cent in the 12 months to October, down from the 5.6 per cent increase in the year to September, reports Xinhua news agency.

It marked the equal-lowest rise for the CPI since January 2022 when inflation was at 4 per cent.

The state media Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) reported that economists had generally forecast the figure would come in at 5.2 per cent.

The ABS identified a 6.1 per cent rise in the cost of housing between October 2022 and October 2023 as the biggest driver of inflation, followed by a 5.9 per cent rise in transport costs and a 5.3 per cent increase in food and non-alcoholic beverage prices in the same period.

Rent prices grew by 6.6 per cent in the 12-month span, down from 7.6 per cent in the year to September, and the 4.7 per cent annual rise in new dwelling prices was the lowest figure since August 2021.

Electricity prices were 8.4 per cent higher in October than in June 2023 but Leigh Merrington, acting head of price statistics at the ABS, said they would have been even higher if not for the federal government's energy bill rebates for eligible households from July.

"Excluding the rebates, electricity prices would have increased 18.8 percent over this period," he said in a statement.

Holiday travel and accommodation prices fell by 7 per cent between September and October and automotive fuel prices by 2.9 per cent in the same period.



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Title: Aus inflation rate falls to equal-lowest level in over 18 months

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