Gas prices locally on Monday morning were among the lowest in the province according to GasBuddy.com. Most stations in the city were at $1.13.9 for regular self serve while the Super Save station on Green Mountain Road was at $1.12.9. (Mark Brett - Western News)

Canadian inflation decelerates to 1.9% as gas prices weaken

August was the sixth straight month that price growth was 1.9 per cent or higher

Canada’s annual inflation rate slowed slightly to 1.9 per cent in August under the weight of declining gasoline prices.

Inflation was firm enough to stick close to the Bank of Canada’s ideal two per cent target — and August was the sixth straight month that price growth was 1.9 per cent or higher.

The price picture, on its own, did not put pressure on the inflation-targeting Bank of Canada to adjust interest rates.

Excluding pump prices, the consumer price index was up 2.4 per cent from a year ago, Statistics Canada said Wednesday in a new report. Gas prices fell 10.2 per cent last month, which followed a decrease of 6.9 per cent in July.

Price growth was also held back last month, compared with a year earlier, by lower costs for traveller accommodation, internet access services and furniture.

On a month-to-month basis, the price of pork declined 2.7 per cent at a time when Canadian pork products are facing tougher restrictions in the key Chinese market. Consumers also paid 6.5 per cent less for fresh vegetables — the largest decline in five years — as temporary price increases due to poor weather in growing regions eased off.

READ MORE: Inflation hits Bank of Canada 2% target for second straight month

The upward pressure on consumer prices, year-over-year, was led by higher costs for airline tickets, mortgage interest and auto insurance.

The cost of air travel climbed 10.3 per cent in August. The increase was largely related to the impact of the grounding of Boeing 737 Max jets during the busy summer travel season, the report said.

Natural gas prices rose to 5.8 per cent last month, up from a 3.2 per cent increase in July.

The average of Canada’s three gauges for core inflation, which are considered better measures of underlying price pressures by excluding volatile items like gas, hit the central bank’s target at two per cent. The reading was 2.03 per cent in July.

Canada’s domestic economy has been resilient even as trade wars inject significant uncertainty into the slowing global economy.

Many forecasters have been expecting the Bank of Canada to cut its overnight lending rate before the end of the year and perhaps as early as its Oct. 30 policy announcement.

Economists on average had expected an inflation reading of 2.0 per cent for August, according to financial markets data firm Refinitiv.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 18, 2019.

Andy Blatchford, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C. firefighters only responding to most life-threatening calls during COVID-19 pandemic

The directive comes after province spoke with paramedics, fire services, according to top doctor

Visitor to Kamloops army club tests positive for COVID-19: Interior Health

The individual visited Anavets 290 Army and Navy Club between March 13 and March 17

‘An extra $220 every 90 days’: B.C. patients pay more dispensing fees due to prescription limits

Kelowna woman says it’s outrageous to charge for refills every 30 days

CN suspending service between Williams Lake and Squamish, effective April 3

Rail traffic north of Williams Lake will be routed to Vancouver through Prince George and Kamloops

COVID-19: Interior Health orders closure of all fitness centres until May 30

The order is subject to revision, cancellation, or extension

Here’s how to talk to people who aren’t taking physical distancing seriously

Approach the conversation with empathy says conflict expert

B.C. clears more acute hospital beds as COVID-19 case growth slows

Province holding about 40% of beds empty for peak still to come

As 500K+ apply for emergency benefit, Trudeau says aid coming for Canadians left behind

Canada Emergency Response Benefit provides $2,000 per month

Wearing non-medical masks can stop spread of COVID-19 before symptoms start: Tam

Health officials had previously not recommended wearing them

UPDATE: UK PM Boris Johnson moved to intensive care after COVID-19 symptoms worse

He has been quarantined in his Downing St. residence since being diagnosed with COVID-19 on March 26

Travellers, travel agents ‘in agony’ over refund policies and customer service

Many Canadian carriers are offering customers flights rebookings or travel vouchers — but not refunds

Introverted and extroverted kids likely to react differently to COVID-19 restrictions

B.C. child psychologist says your parenting approach can’t be one-size fits all in social isolation

B.C. begins taking submissions for $2M COVID-19 research fund

Rural health, impact of shifting hospital resources among priorities

Most Read