The Sensitive Price Indicator (SPI)-based inflation for the week ending on September 21, 2023, increased by 0.93 percent. This rise was primarily attributed to increased prices in various categories, including food items like chicken (8.49 percent), garlic (5.19 percent), and onions (3.02 percent). Non-food items also contributed to the increase, with notable spikes in the prices of petrol (8.51 percent), diesel (5.54 percent), shirting (1.81 percent), and matchbox (1.42 percent).
On a year-on-year basis, the trend showed a significant increase of 38.66 percent. This was mainly due to rising prices in various sectors, including electricity charges for Q1 (118.16 percent), gas charges for Q1 (108.38 percent), cigarettes (94.69 percent), rice basmati broken (88.43 percent), chilies powder (84.84 percent), and sugar (81.98 percent). However, there were decreases in the prices of certain items such as tomatoes (26.98 percent), pulse gram (2.90 percent), and onions (2.00 percent).
The SPI for the week under review reached 281.77 points compared to the previous week’s 279.18 points. Out of 51 items, prices of 22 items (43.14 percent) increased, 11 items (21.57 percent) decreased, and 18 items (35.29 percent) remained stable.
The SPI also showed varying increases for different consumption groups. For example, the consumption group up to Rs. 17,732 saw a 0.05 percent increase, while the above Rs. 44,175 group experienced a 1.27 percent increase in the SPI.
Items that recorded price increases during the week included petrol super (8.51 percent), chicken (8.49 percent), hi-speed diesel (5.54 percent), garlic (5.19 percent), onions (3.02 percent), and others. On the other hand, items like tomatoes (11.11 percent), sugar (3.57 percent), bananas (2.03 percent), and wheat flour bag (0.77 percent) witnessed price decreases.
These fluctuations in the SPI provide insights into the changing cost of living for various items and consumption groups in Pakistan.