Sean Ford, 27 January 2016

PETROL prices do not appear to have been falling as fast in Tasmania as they have nationally.

That is based on December quarter inflation figures.

They showed automotive fuel prices in Hobart fell by 4.2 per cent, while they fell by an average of 5.7 per cent across the nation’s eight capitals.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics inflation figures only cover the capitals, meaning Hobart inflation is the best available measure for Tasmania.

In the previous two quarters, automotive fuel costs in Hobart rose by a combined 8.7 per cent.

World oil prices have collapsed since September.

Meanwhile, inflation grew faster in Tasmania than any other state in the December quarter.

The Hobart consumer price index was up 0.9 per cent for the quarter, compared to 0.4 per cent nationally.

That took annual Hobart inflation to 1.8 per cent, and annual national inflation to 1.7 per cent.

Both are below the Reserve Bank’s inflation target of 2-3 per cent, with the national figure potentially increasing the chances of an interest rates cut. The cost of tobacco rose steeply in Hobart in the December quarter, jumping by 6.9 per cent.

Domestic holiday and accommodation costs spiked by 11.6 per cent, while the cost of accessories was up by 8.8 per cent.

The cost of food and non-alcoholic drinks increased by 0.5 per cent.

Meat and seafood costs were up by 1.7 per cent, with clothing and footwear up by 2 per cent.

Rent costs were up by 0.3 per cent, while electricity costs were flat. Communications costs were down by 2.3 per cent.

Insurance costs were up by 1.3 per cent.

Motor vehicle costs were down by 1.5 per cent, which the ABS said was due to end-of-year sales.

Extracted in full from The Advocate.