Compared to the previous twelve months, the average level of consumer prices rose by 0.1 % during the last twelve months, according to the information from the Central Statistical Bureau of Latvia.
Compared to March 2015, the greatest pressure on average level of consumer prices was put by the drop in prices of goods and services related to transport, goods and services related to housing, as well as by the rise in prices of alcoholic beverages and tobacco products, health care, restaurant and hotel services in March 2016.
Compared to the corresponding month of the previous year, in March 2016 average level of food prices increased by 0.2 %. The greatest upward impact on changes was put by prices of fresh vegetables, fruit, pasta products, dried, salted or smoked meat, potatoes, and sugar. While changes in prices of cheese and curd, milk, kefir, and bakery products caused downward impact.
Mainly because of the rise in prices of beer and spirits, average level of alcoholic beverage prices grew by 4.9 %. Prices of tobacco products rose by 5.1 %.
During the year, prices of goods and services related to housing dropped by 4.0 %. Prices of heat energy, natural gas, and electricity went down, while actual rentals for housing and maintenance charges in multi-occupied buildings went up.
Mainly due to the increase in prices of pharmaceutical products, average level of health care prices grew by 3.0 %. Prices of dental services increased.
Within the transport group, significantly affected by the drop in prices of fuels for transport (of 15.7 %), price level had declined on average by 5.8 %. Compared to March 2015, reduction was observed in prices of passenger transport by air, whereas increase was recorded in prices of maintenance and repair of personal transport equipment.
Compared to March of the previous year, prices of restaurant and hotel services grew by 2.0 %. Similarly to prices in canteens, prices in cafés and restaurants went up – by 2.2 %. During the year, average level of hotel service prices went down by 4.2 %.
Among other consumption groups, the most significant drop was recorded in prices of internet access services and prices of cleaning and maintenance products.
During the month, average level of consumer prices increased by 0.7 %
Compared to February 2016, in March 2016 average level of consumer prices rose by 0.7 %. Prices of goods have increased by 0.8 %, and prices of services – by 0.6 %.
In March, the greatest pressure on the consumer price changes was put by the increase in prices of clothing and footwear, recreation and culture, goods and services related to transport, food and non-alcoholic beverages, as well as reduction in prices of goods and services related to housing.
During the month, prices of food and no-alcoholic beverages grew by 0.3 %. Growth of 6.5 % in fresh vegetable prices, as the greatest increase was recorded in prices of tomatoes, sweet peppers, cucumbers, and fresh cabbage, had the most significant impact on the price level changes within the food group. Due to the end of sales campaigns, prices of ground coffee increased. Rise was recorded also in prices of sweets, bread, non-alcoholic beverages, fruit and vegetable juices, eggs, and chocolate. While reduction was observed in prices of meat and meat products, fruit, and bakery products.
The growth in prices of clothing and footwear characteristic to March was due to the end of seasonal sales and fact that goods of the new season entered the market. Prices of clothing have increased by 9.5 % and prices of footwear – by 10.5 %.
Average level of heat energy prices has declined by 2.4 %. Maintenance charges in multi-occupied buildings fell. Increase was recorded in average level of rent and prices of materials for the maintenance and repair of the dwelling.
Within the transport group, mainly because of the rise in prices of passenger transport by air, average level of consumer prices rose by 0.6 %. During the month, average level of prices of fuels for transport grew by 0.2 %. Services of passenger transport by sea became more expensive, whereas spare parts and accessories for personal transport equipment became cheaper.
As starting from 1 March 2016 new Excise Duty rates were introduced, significant increase was observed in prices of spirits. Among other consumption groups, growth was recorded in prices of package holidays, garden products and flowers, as well as non-durable household goods. Reduction was observed in prices of pet food.