Overall consumer prices rose by 1.3% in April 2022

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23rd May 2022 – (Hong Kong) The Census and Statistics Department (C&SD) released today the Consumer Price Index (CPI) figures for April 2022. According to the Composite CPI, overall consumer prices rose by 1.3% in April 2022 over the same month a year earlier, smaller than the corresponding increase (1.7%) in March 2022. Netting out the effects of all Government’s one-off relief measures, the year-on-year rate of increase in the Composite CPI (i.e. the underlying inflation rate) in April 2022 was 1.6%, also smaller than that in March 2022 (1.7%). The smaller increase was mainly due to the slower increases in the prices of basic food, particularly fresh vegetables.

On a seasonally adjusted basis, the average monthly rate of increase in the Composite CPI for the 3-month period ending April 2022 was 0.1%, and that for the 3-month period ending March 2022 was 0.3%. Netting out the effects of all Government’s one-off relief measures, the corresponding rates of increase were 0.2% and 0.3%.    

 Analysed by sub-index, the year-on-year rates of increase in the CPI(A), CPI(B) and CPI(C) were 1.1%, 1.3% and 1.6% respectively in April 2022, as compared to 1.8%, 1.7% and 1.8% respectively in March 2022. Netting out the effects of all Government’s one-off relief measures, the year-on-year rates of increase in the CPI(A), CPI(B) and CPI(C) were 1.6%, 1.5% and 1.7% respectively in April 2022, as compared to 1.9%, 1.6% and 1.7% respectively in March 2022.    

 On a seasonally adjusted basis, for the 3-month period ending April 2022, the average monthly rates of change in the seasonally adjusted CPI(A), CPI(B) and CPI(C) were 0.2%, 0.0% and 0.1% respectively. The corresponding rates of change for the 3-month period ending March 2022 were 0.3%, 0.2% and 0.3% respectively. Netting out the effects of all Government’s one-off relief measures, the average monthly rates of increase in the seasonally adjusted CPI(A), CPI(B) and CPI(C) for the 3-month period ending April 2022 were 0.3%, 0.1% and 0.2% respectively, and the corresponding rates of increase for the 3-month period ending March 2022 were 0.3%, 0.2% and 0.3% respectively.    

Amongst the various components of the Composite CPI, year-on-year increases in prices were recorded in April 2022 for basic food (5.2%); clothing and footwear (3.6%); meals out and takeaway food (3.2%); transport (1.8%); alcoholic drinks and tobacco (1.7%); miscellaneous services (1.3%); durable goods (1.2%); miscellaneous goods (0.9%) and electricity, gas and water (0.2%).    

On the other hand, year-on-year decrease in the component of the Composite CPI was recorded in April 2022 for housing (-0.6%).    

 Taking the first 4 months of 2022 together, the Composite CPI rose by 1.5% over a year earlier. The respective increases in the CPI(A), CPI(B) and CPI(C) were 1.4%, 1.5% and 1.6% respectively. The corresponding increases after netting out the effects of all Government’s one-off relief measures were 1.6%, 1.6%, 1.5% and 1.6% respectively.    

 For the 3 months ending April 2022, the Composite CPI rose by 1.6% over a year earlier, while the CPI(A), CPI(B) and CPI(C) rose by 1.5%, 1.5% and 1.7% respectively. The corresponding increases after netting out the effects of all Government’s one-off relief measures were 1.7%, 1.7%, 1.6% and 1.7% respectively.    

 For the 12 months ending April 2022, the Composite CPI was on average 1.7% higher than that in the preceding 12-month period. The respective increases in the CPI(A), CPI(B) and CPI(C) were 2.3%, 1.4% and 1.4% respectively. The corresponding increases after netting out the effects of all Government’s one-off relief measures were 1.2%, 1.2%, 1.0% and 1.1% respectively.  

A Government spokesman said that the underlying consumer price inflation rate edged down to 1.6% in April. The increase in basic food prices, though remaining notable, saw some moderation thanks to the stabilisation of fresh vegetables supply. Meanwhile, price increases for meals out and takeaway food picked up amid the receding local epidemic. Prices of energy-related items continued to record visible increases.

 Looking ahead, while external price pressures are expected to remain intensive in view of elevated inflation in many major economies, overall inflation should stay moderate in the near term as domestic cost pressures remain largely mild. The Government will continue to monitor the situation. 

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