Business News of 2014-01-24

Utilities sub-sector records highest inflation

The utilities sub-sector recorded the highest inflation rate of 41.0 per cent in December 2013 as a result of the hikes in utility tariffs over that period.
The manufacturing sub-sector followed with 17.4 per cent, while the mining and quarrying sub-sector recorded an inflation rate of -13.2 per cent, resulting in an overall producer inflation of 15.3 per cent for December 2013.
Inflation, from the producer’s perspective, looks at the average change over time in the prices received by domestic producers for the production of their goods and services.
The December Producer Price Inflation (PPI) figure, thus, represents an increase of 2.3 per cent point relative to the revised rate of 13.0 per cent recorded in November 2013.
Consequently, the month-on-month change in producer prices between November 2013 and December 2013 was 1.6 per cent.
Announcing the rate alongside the 3rd quarter Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for 2013 at a news conference in Accra, the Government Statistician, Dr Philomena Nyarko, said the monthly changes in the producer price index indicated that manufacturing recorded a monthly inflation rate of 2.5 per cent, while utility recorded 0.1 per cent, with the mining and quarrying sub-sector recording the lowest rate of -0.9 per cent.
In the petroleum sector, Dr Nyarko explained that the sector’s inflation rate increased consistently to record 33.6 per cent in September 2013 as a result of the increases in the prices of petroleum products, but decreased in October 2013 to record a rate of 30.0 per cent, adding that “following this, the rate increased consistently to record 35.7 per cent in December 2013.”
Meanwhile, real domestic GDP for the third quarter of 2013 grew by 0.3 per cent, compared to the 6.1 per cent growth recorded in the second quarter of 2013.
Dr Nyarko explained that the services sector recorded the highest growth of 6.7 per cent, while the agriculture and industry sectors followed with negative growth rates of 3.8 per cent and 11.8 per cent respectively.