Canadian dollars fall in a photo illustration in Vancouver, Sept. 22, 2011. Statistics Canada says the consumer price index in September was 2.2% per cent compared with a year ago. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

Annual pace of inflation slows to 2.2 per cent in September: Statistics Canada

Statistics Canada said Friday the consumer price index in September was up 2.2 per cent from a year ago compared with a year-over-year increase of 2.8 per cent in August

The annual pace of inflation slowed more than expected in September as increases in the price of gasoline continued to ease.

Statistics Canada said Friday the consumer price index in September was up 2.2 per cent from a year ago compared with a year-over-year increase of 2.8 per cent in August.

Economists had expected the September figure to come in at 2.7 per cent, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon.

The inflation report comes ahead of the Bank of Canada’s rate decision next week when it will also update its forecast for the economy in its monetary policy report.

The central bank, which aims to keep inflation within a target range of one to three per cent and adjusts its interest rate target to help achieve that goal, is expected to raise its key interest rate target, which sits at 1.5 per cent, by a quarter of a percentage point.

TD Bank senior economist James Marple said the softer-than-expected inflation report did little to alter TD’s expectation that the Bank of Canada will raise rates next week.

“I don’t think one month of soft price growth is going to change the Bank of Canada’s mind on a rate hike,” he said.

READ MORE: Bank of Canada holds interest rate at 1.5 per cent

Marple said the new U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement removed a key risk for the economy, but added challenges such as high household debt remain.

“There’s still are some underlying risks that have always been there and maybe weren’t in the spotlight because we were all focused on trade,” he said.

“We have very high household debt levels. We have mortgage rates that have been increasing and will continue to increase even with very little action from the Bank of Canada.”

Statistics Canada said prices were up in all eight major components for the 12 months to September.

The transportation index, which includes gasoline, was up 3.9 per cent in September compared with a 7.2 per cent move in August as gasoline prices last month were up 12 per cent compared with a 19.9 per cent increase in August.

However, the transportation group remained the largest contributor to the overall year-over-year increase in the index.

Food prices were up 1.8 per cent, while shelter costs rose 2.5 per cent. Alcoholic beverages and tobacco products were up 4.4 per cent.

Bank of Montreal chief economist Doug Porter noted the price of air fares, while up 7.4 per cent from a year ago, fell 16.6 per cent compared with the previous month. Hotel rates were also down 5.2 per cent compared with a year ago.

“With travel tours also down 3.2 per cent, that meant that tourism overall got a lot cheaper in Canada last month,” Porter wrote in a brief report, adding that vehicle prices were up just 0.7 per cent on a year-over-year basis.

“All of these soft sectors combined to clip core inflation as well, although the easing there was much less dramatic than in the headline tally,” Porter said.

The average of the three measures of core inflation, which look to strip out more-volatile items like gas prices and are closely scrutinized by the Bank of Canada, was 2.0 per cent in September compared with 2.1 per cent in August.

In a separate report, Statistics Canada said retail sales fell 0.1 per cent in August to $50.8 billion as sales moved lower in seven of 11 of the subsectors tracked by the agency.

Sales at gasoline stations were down 2.0 per cent, while clothing and clothing accessories stores fell 1.2 per cent. Motor vehicle and parts dealers saw sales increase 0.8 per cent.

Retail sales in volume terms were down 0.3 per cent.

Craig Wong, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Paramedics union raises alarm over spike in out-of-service ambulances

Staffing shortages affecting service levels in Kootenays

West Kootenay rod and gun clubs slammed for animal-killing contests

Wildlife activists are targeting the club and two other B.C. organizations

Interior Health hospitals to serve more made in B.C. food

New initiative by the Ministry of Agriculture to serve more B.C. produced food in hospitals

VIDEO: Restaurant robots are already in Canada

Robo Sushi in Toronto has waist-high robots that guide patrons to empty seats

Permit rejected to bring two cheetahs to B.C.

Earl Pfeifer owns two cheetahs, one of which escaped in December 2015

Real-life tsunami threat in Port Alberni prompts evacuation updates

UBC study says some people didn’t recognize the emergency signal

Care providers call for B.C. seniors’ watchdog to step down

The association also asks the province to conduct an audit and review of the mandate of her office

Nitro Cold Brew Coffee from B.C. roaster recalled due to botulism scare

“If you purchased N7 Nitro Cold Brew Coffee from Cherry Hill … do not drink it.”

B.C. man gets award for thwarting theft, sexual assault – all in 10 minutes

Karl Dey helped the VPD take down a violent sex offender

Baby left alone in vehicle in B.C. Walmart parking lot

Williams Lake RCMP issue warning after attending complaint at Walmart Wednesday

College of the Rockies to add 96 beds for student housing in Cranbrook

$17.7 million project featuring six cottege-style buildings to be completed by 2020

Nowhere to grieve: How homeless people deal with loss during the opioid crisis

Abbotsford homeless advocate says grief has distinct challenges for those living on the streets

Most Read