Ottawa, Jan 20 (IANS) Canada’s annual rate of inflation rose to 4.8 per cent in December 2021, the highest since 1991 due to higher prices for food, passenger vehicles and housing, according to Statistics Canada.
The inflation, which has been rising since the Covid-19 outbreak in February 2020, was 4.7 per cent in November 2021, reports Xinhua news agency citing Statistics Canada as saying.
Prices at the gas pumps were up 33.3 percent year over year in December compared with a 43.6 per cent annual increase in November as the tightening of public health restrictions related to the Omicron Covid-19 variant weighed on demand.
Excluding gasoline, Statistics Canada said the Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 4 per cent year over year in December.
On a monthly basis, the CPI fell 0.1 per cent in December, following a 0.2 per cent increase in November.
This was the first monthly decline since December 2020, as gasoline prices fell in response to lower demand amid the spread of the Omicron variant.
December marked nine months in a row that headline inflation has come in above the Bank of Canada’s target zone of between 1 per cent and 3 per cent.
The Bank of Canada said it would act to stop runaway inflation.
It is scheduled to make a rate announcement next week.