(Source: The Philippine Star | 2 April 2016)
Retail prices in Metro Manila rose for the sixth straight month in January due mainly to the uptrend in the heavily weighted food index, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said yesterday.
The General Retail Price Index (GRPI) in the National Capital Region (NCR) went up 1.2 percent in January, faster than the annual growth rate of one percent in December but slower than 1.8 percent in January 2015.
The uptrend was mainly due to the 3.3 percent growth registered in the food index, the PSA noted.
The rate of increase in the indices of beverages and tobacco, meanwhile, slowed down to 2.6 percent. The indices of chemicals, animal and vegetable oils and fats also slowed down to one percent.
Annual declines were also seen in indices of mineral fuels, lubricants, and related materials; crude materials inedible, except fuels; machinery and transport equipment; and manufactured good classified chiefly by materials.
On a monthly basis, the GRPI in NCR registered a zero percent change in January due to offsetting movements seen across commodity groups.
The food index rose 0.7 percent, brought about by high prices of vegetables, fruits, meat, fish, sugar and cooking oil.
High prices of whiskey, beer, softdrinks and cigarettes also pushed up the index of beverages and tobacco to 0.1 percent.
A series of price roll backs in petroleum products such as gasoline, diesel fuel and LPG pushed down the index of mineral fuels, lubricants and related materials by 4.9 percent.
Price decreases in wires caused the index of machinery and transport equipment to decline 0.4 percent.
Downward month-on-month adjustments were also seen in the prices of paints and related compounds, chemicals, oils and fats, manufactured goods, as well as charcoal and sand.
The index for miscellaneous manufactured articles, meanwhile registered flat growth.
— By Czeriza Valencia