Interest rate fears eased by inflation data

Wednesday 28 July 2010

Article by Mozo

Fears of an official interest rate hike next month have been eased after Consumer Price Index data showed a smaller-than-expected rise in inflation.

However, while the data, released today (July 28th) could discourage the Reserve Bank (RBA) from making a move next month, it also shows how Aussies are being squeezed when it comes to everyday living costs, news.com.au reported.

For example, the figures point to a record surge in the cost of cigarettes after the federal government’s tax hike earlier this year.

The 25 per cent excise tax increase pushed the overall cost of tobacco up more than 17 per cent over the year to June, making it the sharpest price rise since December 1975, the news website said.

It was also revealed that the cost of beer went up by more than six per cent over the year to June although fruit prices fell nearly five per cent in the three-month period to June because of "seasonal availability" and favourable weather conditions.

The RBA opted to keep the cash rate on hold at 4.5 per cent on July 6th and suggested it would not consider moving from this position at the August 3rd meeting unless inflation had noticeably changed.

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