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Growth Rate in Consumer Prices Hits 38-Month High

Posted January. 01, 2008 03:24,   


Due to skyrocketing oil, agricultural product and utility prices, the growth rate in consumer prices soared to its highest level since October 2004.

According to “Consumer Price Trends in December 2007” released by the National Statistical Office yesterday, prices rose by 3.6% last month compared to the same month a year before. This growth rate is the highest ever recorded after 3.8% in October 2004.

Although the growth rate in consumer prices compared to the same month a year before constantly stayed below 3% from 2006 to September 2007, it shot up to 3.0% in October from 2.3% in September, and finally to 3.5% in November.

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) for living necessities, which measures prices for basic goods such as groceries, rose by 4.8%, and the CPI for fresh groceries rose by 5.6% from December 2006 onwards.

By items, radishes saw the largest price increase, 118.3%, followed by Korean cabbage (109.3%), spring onions (99.0%), gold rings (28.1%), Kerosene (22.9%) and gasoline (15.0%). Utilities and public transportation costs also grew substantially: Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) rose by 10.9%, subway fares by 10.9%, and bus fare by 8.5%.

Meanwhile, last year’s average consumer prices were reported to have jumped by 2.5% from 2006.