The Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) has revised the Consumer Price Index (CPI), using the 2017 Household Expenditure Survey.
Introduced in April 2020, the new CPI series reflects the expenditure patterns of low- to middle-income households in Jamaica.
The CPI measures the movement of prices of consumer goods and services purchased by private households and is one of the most widely used statistics for measuring inflation.
Speaking at the Institute’s quarterly virtual press briefing on July 15, the Director General, Carol Coy, said that the CPI was revised to “identify new commodities that have entered or left the market, account for quality changes in products, and to capture changes in expenditure patterns on goods and services”.
The CPI basket now contains more than 300 commodities, including newly added items such as technology products, health food products, hair extensions, toll, entertainment and recreation activities, namely parties and attractions.
Ms. Coy also indicated that the criteria used to include items in the CPI basket were “the level of expenditure on an item, the feasibility of obtaining accurate and reliable prices, and items with expenditure weight of 0.5 per cent or higher”.
The new CPI will be reported using the following expenditure divisions: food and non-alcoholic beverages; alcoholic beverages, tobacco and narcotics; clothing and footwear; housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels; furnishings, household equipment and routine household maintenance; health; transport; information and communication; recreation, sport and culture; education services; restaurants and accommodation services; insurance and finance services; and personal care, social protection and miscellaneous goods and services.
The CPI basket is usually revised once every 10 years. The next revision is expected in 2027.