Deflation seen in B.C. consumer prices

B.C.'s consumer price index slipped into negative territory in November, partly due the repeal of the harmonized sales tax

Grocery store prices were up slightly

B.C.’s consumer price index slipped into negative territory in November, partly due the repeal of the harmonized sales tax last spring.

The price index in Vancouver was up slightly, but deflation in Victoria and other areas of the province produced a provincial average of -0.2 per cent for the month. Canada-wide, inflation was 0.9 per cent.

The cost of restaurant food fell 4.4 per cent in November compared to the same month in 2012, Statistics Canada reported. The provincial average cost of health and personal care, including services where sales tax was removed, went down 3.1 per cent.

There were average price increases in food purchased from stores, up 1.1 per cent, clothing up 1.3 per cent, transportation up 0.7 per cent and alcohol and tobacco products, up 1.7 per cent.

Average rent costs were up 1.0 per cent, but overall shelter cost was down 0.7 per cent, continuing a decline since mid-2012.