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New Zealand Q3 Inflation Climbs 0.7% On Quarter; Seasonally Adjusted +0.3%

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Consumer prices in New Zealand rose 0.7 percent on quarter in the third quarter of 2020, Statistics New Zealand said on Friday.

That was shy of expectations for an increase of 0.9 percent on quarter following the 0.5 percent contraction in the three months prior.

Seasonally adjusted, inflation was up 0.3 percent on quarter.

Individually, food rose 1.2 percent, influenced by higher prices for fruit and vegetables (up 12 percent seasonally adjusted).

Housing and household utilities prices rose 0.6 percent, influenced by higher prices for property rates and related services (up 2.9 percent).

Household contents and services rose 2.1 percent, influenced by household appliances (up 5.5 percent).

Transport rose 0.7 percent, influenced by private transport supplies and services (up 1.4 percent).

On a yearly basis, consumer prices were up 1.4 percent - again missing forecasts for a gain of 1.7 percent and slowing from 1.5 percent in the previous three months.

Food again was the biggest factor, increasing 3.7 percent on year. This was driven by a 15 percent price increase in fruit and vegetables, a 3.8 percent increase in restaurant meals and ready-to-eat foods, and a 1.3 percent increase in grocery foods for the year ending September 2020.

Housing and household utilities was another leading contributor to the annual CPI, increasing by 2.6 percent. The rise in this group was influenced by higher prices for rents, purchase of housing, and property rates and related services.

Actual rentals for housing increased 3.1 percent nationwide in the year to September 2020. Regionally, rental prices increased 1.6 percent in Auckland, 5.1 percent in Wellington, and 1.6 percent in Canterbury.

Alcoholic beverages and tobacco increased 5.1 percent for the year, with cigarettes and tobacco up 11 percent.

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