Overall consumer prices rose 2.1% in February year-on-year, larger than the increase registered in January, the Census & Statistics Department announced today.

Netting out the effects of the Government’s one-off relief measures, the underlying inflation rate was 1.2%, also higher than January.

As the Lunar New Year fell in February this year but in January last year, the year-on-year comparison of the figures for January and February 2024 might have been affected by this factor to a certain extent.

Taking the first two months of 2024 together to neutralise the Lunar New Year effect, overall consumer prices rose by 1.9% over a year earlier. Netting out the effect of the Government's one-off relief measures, the corresponding increase was 0.9%.

Compared with February last year, price increases were seen in the following categories: alcoholic drinks and tobacco; meals out and takeaway food; miscellaneous services; housing; transport; clothing and footwear; and miscellaneous goods. 

By contrast, year-on-year decreases for electricity, gas and water, durable goods, and basic food were recorded.

The Government said the underlying consumer price inflation stayed moderate in the first two months of 2024.

It noted that prices of basic food declined from a year earlier, and those of energy-related items fell further.

Prices of meals out and takeaway food continued to see relatively fast increases, while price pressures on other major components remained broadly in check.

Looking ahead, the Government said overall inflation should remain moderate in the near term, and that domestic costs may face some upward pressures as the economy continues to grow. It added that external price pressures should ease further.


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