Canadian prices, as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI), rose 4.7% on a year-over-year basis in November, matching the rate in October. On a month-over-month basis, the CPI was up 0.2% in November. The Bank of Canada's preferred measures of core inflation (which use techniques to strip out volatile elements) rose an average of 2.7% year-over-year in November. Higher prices for gasoline (+43.6%), furniture (+8.7%) and food (+4.4%) were the main drivers of growth in the headline CPI. Continuing supply-chain difficulties continued contributing to price gains, but the flooding in BC had no effect as data was collected prior to the floods in November. In BC, consumer prices were up 0.2% month-over-month, and up 3.3% on a year-over-year basis.
Inflation continues to run ahead of the Bank of Canada's 2 per cent target. The driving force behind rising prices in November year-over-year was a 10% increase in transportation costs due to rising gasoline prices. Inflation from shelter costs was up month-over-month as home prices trended higher after flattening out over the summer. Those categories account for about 65% of the year-over-year rise in consumer prices in November. We expect this elevated level of inflation to persist through next year before prices begin moderating. The Bank of Canada is clearly concerned about rising consumer prices and have signaled that it will begin raising its policy rate in the second or third quarter of 2022.
Copyright British Columbia Real Estate Association. Reprinted with permission.