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Sunday, May 19, 2024

Contrary to expectations, prices did not drop in May; rather, they kept increasing


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In May, inflation kept up its upward trend, putting strain on households. However, the Central Statistics Office (CSO) reported that the inflation rate had dropped from April’s figure to 5.4%.

The EU Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (HICP) showed that the cost of goods and services in Ireland had increased by 0.3% in May, when compared to the same month the previous year.

Energy prices decreased by 3.1% over the month, but were still 2% higher than the same period the year before. Food prices went up by 0.4% in May and 12.5% year-on-year. This means that food prices have been rising faster than other goods and services.

When energy and unprocessed food are excluded, the core inflation rate for May stands at 5.7%. Eurostat will publish its flash estimates of Eurozone inflation for May tomorrow.

CSO statistician Anthony Dawson commented: “The latest flash estimate of the Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (HICP), compiled by the CSO, indicates that prices for consumer goods and services in Ireland are estimated to have increased by 5.4pc in the past year.”

Grocery inflation is more than 16% and, although there was a slight dip in May and a minor drop the previous month, food prices remain on the rise. Labour’s Finance spokesperson Ged Nash has suggested that the Government should follow the UK and ask retailers to introduce voluntary price caps on some products.

Fine Gael has also been warned that food prices could skyrocket due to tighter environmental regulations for farmers. This warning came from former Irish Farmers’ Association president Eddie Downey at a private Fine Gael meeting. Just days before, Junior Retail Minister Neale Richmond had failed to secure a commitment from supermarkets to reduce grocery prices.

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