The Minister explained, “In June 2020 consumers paid the same as they did for the CPI basket of goods and services in June 2019. Between May 2020 and June 2020 the average cost of all goods and services decreased 0.1 percentage points.”
The Minister added, “The public should note that some price data used to produce the CPI index was not collected in June 2020 due to some unavailable goods and services, non-response from open stores and the temporary store closures caused by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
"As a result of COVID-19, in-person field collection was suspended and, where possible, prices were collected via alternative methods such as online and email. One of the nine sectors in June 2020 had missing prices which were imputed, Transport & Foreign Travel. Table 2 provides June 2020, May 2020 and June 2019 outlets and price collection methods metadata for comparison. All missing prices were imputed by targeted mean imputation and the carry forward method.”
The Rent sector (-0.9 per cent), the Transport & Foreign Travel sector (-4.4 per cent) and the Fuel & Power sector (-2.4 per cent) impacted strongly on the annual rate of inflation. Offsetting increases in the CPI were registered in the Food sector (+3.0 per cent) and the Health & Personal Care sector (+1.8 per cent). The annual increase in health and personal care services stood at its lowest level since March 2018.
Between May 2020 and June 2020 the Rent sector was down 0.5 per cent as the average cost of properties not subject to rent control slid 1.2 per cent in June. The Transport & Foreign Travel sector dipped 0.4 per cent for the month. The average price of overseas hotel accommodations fell 7.4 per cent. The Food sector edged up 0.2 per cent in June. Price changes occurred for local carrots (+11.0 per cent), cantaloupes (+8.4 per cent) and whipping cream (+1.8 per cent). In addition, the average cost of restaurant dining moved up 2.8 per cent.
The June 2020 Consumer Price Index is available online at www.gov.bm/bermuda-business-statistics.