Sample tomatoes are seen at the Jean Talon Market, Monday, January 11, 2016 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson

Inflation rises again, hitting 2.4% in January

Gas prices rose 11.2% due to events in Middle East and coronavirus outbreak

Statistics Canada says the annual pace of inflation in Canada jumped 2.4 per cent to start 2020, fuelled by higher costs at the gas pump and pricey tomatoes.

The move compared with a year-over-year increase of 2.2 per cent in December.

Economists had expected a reading of 2.3 per cent for January, according to a poll by financial markets data firm Refinitiv.

Gas prices in January increased 11.2 per cent compared with a year ago as prices rose at the start the month due to concerns about events in the Middle East only to move lower later in the month in response to the novel coronavirus outbreak.

Statistics Canada said Wednesday that excluding gasoline the year-over-year inflation rate would have been two per cent in January.

Costs grew for fresh vegetables by five per cent, largely attributable the agency says to a 10.8 per cent bump in the price of tomatoes stemming from inclement weather in growing regions of the United States and Mexico.

The overall increase in prices of 2.4 per cent compared with a year ago was also driven by increased mortgage interest costs, purchases of passenger vehicles, auto insurance premiums, and a bump in rents.

The increases were partly offset by lower prices for telephone services, internet access, tuition fees and traveller accommodation.

The average of Canada’s three measures for core inflation, which are considered better gauges of underlying price pressures and closely tracked by the Bank of Canada, was 2.033 per cent compared with 2.067 per cent for December.

Regionally, prices on a year-over-year basis rose more in January than December in every province except Ontario and Quebec.

READ MORE: Budget 2020: B.C. Liberals blast ‘Netflix tax,’ lack of economic plan

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

inflation

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Conflict expert explains how to talk to people who aren’t social distancing

Approach the conversation with empathy says conflict expert

COVID-19: Managing your mental health from isolation

Ministry of Mental Health, Addictions recommends numerous strategies for self-care during pandemic

Saanich moves forward with summer camp registration despite COVID-19

District to give full refunds if camps are cancelled

Sunday morning fire damages Victoria gas station

The fire on Fairfield Road caused $75,000 in estimated damages to tires and automotive equipment

‘Better days will return’: Queen Elizabeth delivers message amid COVID-19 pandemic

The Queen said crisis reminds her of her first address during World War II in 1940

Emergency aid portal opens Monday, cash could be in bank accounts by end of week: Trudeau

Emergency benefit will provide $2,000 a month for those who have lost their income due to COVID-19

Education, not enforcement: B.C. bylaw officers keeping a watch on physical distancing

A kind word, it turns out, has usually been all people need to hear

COVID-19: Hospitals remain safe for childbirth, say Vancouver Island care providers

North Island Hospital has been asked to share its perinatal COVID-19 response plan

Canadian cadets to mark 103rd anniversary of Vimy Ridge April 9 virtually

Idea of Captain Billie Sheridan in Williams Lake, B.C. who wondered what to do in times of COVID-19

B.C. VIEWS: Pandemic shows need for adequate care home staffing

Seniors in B.C. care homes face challenging times

QUIZ: How much do you know about hockey?

Take this test and find out how well you know Canada’s most popular winter sport

Researchers look at humidity as a weapon in the fight against airborne viruses

Regular hand washing, physical distancing and PPE for health care workers remains best line of defense

Most Read