The CPI is a key economic indicator and it is important to understand it well. Thus, the index is updated periodically to reflect current consumer trends and tastes.
“In the latest update… the IPC basket will now contain 415 items, compared to 404 in 2016. A total of 14 new items have been added, while two items have been removed from the basket. Some products have either been split into two or combined into one,” said Statistics South Africa (Stats SA).
DVD players and satellite dishes are the two items that have been removed, which was probably long overdue.
Gin is among the added elements – a reflection of its growing popularity as a trendy drink. Cappuccino sachets were also placed in the basket, along with samples, printer cartridges and printer paper. The inclusion of jam is curious – is it really that popular and if so, why hasn’t it been included before? “Internet usage” has been divided into two categories: wired and wireless.
Cannabis products will be worthy of inclusion if the government ever adopts a sensible legalization policy.
The exercise comes against the backdrop of growing concerns about accelerating inflation in South Africa and around the world. This highlights the importance of getting its measurement accurately.
A cart that included DVD players and not gin clearly missed the mark. DM/BM