Economy

Inflation rises to five-month high in October

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A Kenya Power employee inspects a meter box. Household consumption of 200 units of electricity bill increased by 3.15 per cent in October 2020. FILE PHOTO | NMG

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Summary

  • Increased food, transport, and electricity prices drive up inflation to 4.84 per cent.

Kenya’s inflation jumped to a five-month high in October, largely driven by increased transport, electricity and food prices.

Inflation, which is a measure of changes in the cost of living year-on-year, rose to 4.84 per cent from 4.20 per cent in September, the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) said on Friday.

This is the highest growth since 5.33 per cent in May 2020.

“The month to month food and non-alcoholic drinks’ index rose by 1.14 per cent in October 2020, while the year-on-year food inflation increased by 5.76 per cent. This was contributed by increase in prices of carrots, mutton and wheat flour- white, among other food items,” KNBS said in a statement on Friday.

The increase outweighed the drop in common household food items such as cabbages, loose maize grains and spinach, which went down 1.59 per cent, 1.13 per cent, and 0.91 per cent, respectively, over the review period.

A kilo of carrots increased 0.92 per cent to retail at Sh71.20 up from Sh70.55 in September, while a kilo of white wheat flour cost an average of Sh117.76, a 0.80 per cent rise. A kilo of mutton sold at Sh525.71, a 0.82 per cent rise from Sh521.46.

Food products carry the biggest weight in the inflation basket.

Household consumption of 200 units of electricity, however, saw the sharpest increase after the bill rose 3.15 per cent to Sh4,751.22 from Sh4,606.20 a month earlier.

Motorists and commuters paid more as transport costs increased by 0.62 per cent.

"This was mainly due to a rise in the price of petrol by 1.72 per cent, which outweighed the decrease of 1.68 per cent in the price of diesel," KNBS said.