Information from the Statistics and Census Service (DSEC) indicated that the Composite CPI in December 2018 increased by 2.94% year-on-year to 114.35, a slowdown of 0.18 percentage points from the 3.12% growth in November. The inflation rate for 2018 was 3.01%, up by 1.78 percentage points from 1.23% in 2017.
The year-on-year growth in December 2018 was attributable to dearer charges for eating out, rising rentals for dwellings, higher parking meter rates as well as increasing prices of adults’ clothing. Among the various sections of goods and services, price indices of Clothing & Footwear and Education grew notably by 6.00% and 5.95% respectively year-on-year, while the index of Communication decreased by 6.85%. The CPI-A (114.46) and CPI-B (113.47) went up by 2.95% and 2.88% respectively year-on-year.
The Composite CPI in December 2018 rose by 0.34% month-to-month. New arrival of winter clothing and higher charges for package tours during Christmas holidays pushed up the price indices of Clothing & Footwear and Recreation & Culture by 2.35% and 2.32% respectively. Price index of Food & Non-Alcoholic Beverages grew by 0.11% owing to higher charges for eating out as well as rising prices of fresh fish and seafood. Despite a fall in gasoline prices, price index of Transport edged up by 0.05% due to increases in motor car prices and airfares. The CPI-A and CPI-B rose by 0.32% and 0.50% respectively month-to-month.
The average Composite CPI for the fourth quarter of 2018 (114.01) rose by 3.14% year-on-year; the average CPI-A (114.14) and CPI-B (112.92) went up by 3.17% and 2.86% respectively.
For the whole year of 2018, the average Composite CPI increased by 3.01% year-on-year to 112.85. The increment was driven by dearer charges for eating out, higher rentals for dwellings, rising parking meter rates and tuition fees, as well as increasing prices of adults’ clothing and gasoline. Analysed by section, price indices of Clothing & Footwear (+6.57%), Transport (+5.32%), Health (+4.80%) and Education (+4.76%) registered notable growth, while those of Communication and Alcoholic Beverages & Tobacco dropped by 8.48% and 0.08% respectively. The average CPI-A (112.97) and CPI-B (111.87) for 2018 went up by 3.02% and 2.89% respectively year-on-year.
The Composite CPI reflects the impact of price changes on the general households in Macao. The CPI-A relates to about 50% of the households, which have an average monthly expenditure of MOP10,000 to MOP29,999. The CPI-B relates to about 30% of the households, which have an average monthly expenditure of MOP30,000 to MOP54,999.