Consumer prices up slightly in ’11

The Cayman Islands consumer price index increased by 1.3 per cent last year, according to the CPI survey data released by the Economics and Statistics Office.

Although all categories of the basket of consumer goods and services saw price increases, it was particularly the cost of fuel that drove up prices as electricity, gas and other fuel costs grew by 15.7 per cent in 2011.

The categories that are most dependent on fuel prices, such as transportation and food, rose by 10.6 per cent and 3.5 per cent, respectively.

The average inflation of 1.3 per cent in 2011 was higher than in 2010 
(0.3 per cent).

The consumer price index would have risen more strongly, if housing costs, which continued to moderate slightly, were not included.

Housing accounts for nearly one third of the weighted consumer goods and services in the consumer price index. Prices excluding actual and imputed rentals have risen by 3.4 per cent in 2011.

Correspondingly, a CPI excluding housing would stand at 108.25 in 2011 and 104.7 in 2010 compared with the actual CPI of 100.4 at the end of 2011 and 98.5 in December 2010.

Although prices in December 2011 were 1.9 per cent higher than in December 2010, prices actually decreased in the last 
quarter of 2011.

Specifically, hotel accommodation (-17.6 per cent), average housing rentals (-1.9 per cent), transportation (-1.5 per cent), household furniture (-2.7 per cent) and household appliances (-1.1 per cent) all declined in the fourth quarter compared with prices in 
September 2011.

In the fourth quarter of 2011, fuel prices also showed a delayed reaction to falling crude oil prices in the second and third quarter by plateauing at the end 
of the year.

Consumer Prices For Various items

Crude Oil Price vs Cayman Energy Costs