Inflation for 12 months ending January 2024 sees 7.3 increase, with food and non-alcoholic beverages recording highest spikes

Based on the recently published Consumer Price Index (CPI),
inflation on food items has increased – as expected, since the hike in
the Antigua and Barbuda Sales Tax (ABST), from 15 percent to 17
percent, as of January this year.

The All Items Index for the 12 months ending January 2024 saw an
increase to 7.3 percent – among the larger spikes in the Year-on-Year
Analysis in recent times.

Officials note that this is a significant jump compared to the 3.3
percent hike for the 12 months ending December 2023.
Apparently, the index for food and non-alcoholic beverages
represented 15.1 percent of the overall All Items Index increase.

The Food Index rose 5.4 percent and contributed 83.8 percent to the
Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages Index increase, officials note.
Reportedly, eight of the nine food subcategories rose over the 12-
month period, with the index for bread and cereals representing the
largest contribution of 24.2 percent on food inflation.

According to officials, this change was impacted primarily by
increases in the indexes for bread and other cereals, flour, and other

Meanwhile, the index for fish and seafood had the second largest
impact on food inflation, increasing 11.0 percent and contributing
22.5 percent to food inflation.

The index for vegetables and food products N.E.C. combined
contributed 25.6 percent of the food index increase.

Meanwhile, the index for All Items Less Food and Energy rose 8.8
percent, with the index for communication alone increasing 26.7

Reportedly, “this was affected by an increase in the average cost of
cell phones and cell phone services.”

The index for miscellaneous goods and services increased by 10.1
percent and the index for restaurants and hotels rose by 15.4

There was also an increase by 5.4 percent for the clothing and
footwear index over the same 12-month period.

Looking at the monthly stats, the Consumer Price Index increased in
January by 3.3 percent after increasing only 0.2 percent in December

The Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages increased by 2.1 percent
with the index for food increasing by 2.4 percent over the month.
Reportedly, the index for milk, cheese and eggs increased by 3.4
percent, with other notable increases being meat and meat products

The All Items Consumer Price Index (CPI) is the main measure of
what is commonly called inflation, or headline inflation, and

measures the change in prices, on average, from month to month,
and from year to year on the goods and services bought by most