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Higher rents and utility bills push consumer prices up

New figures from the Central Statistics Office show that consumer prices rose by 0.7% in January compared to the same time last year.

The CSO said the gain came on the back of higher rents and mortgage interest repayments as well as increases in the price of electricity and gas and higher prices for food and drinks in hotels and restaurants.

On a monthly basis, however, consumer prices fell by 0.7% in January due to sales on clothes and footwear in shops and lower prices for diesel and petrol.

Today’s figures show that prices in restaurants and hotels rose by 3.7% in January on an annual basis on the back of higher prices for alcoholic drinks and food consumed in licensed premises and restaurants.

Housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels were up 4.4% on the back of higher rents and mortgage interest repayments as well as higher electricity and gas prices.

However, January saw lower health and motor insurance premiums as well as a fall in prices for appliances, articles and products for personal care.

Transport costs decreased mainly due to a decrease in air fares which was partially offset by an increase in the cost of motor cars and higher prices for passenger transport by road, the CSO added.

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