Canadian dollars fall in a photo illustration in Vancouver, Sept. 22, 2011. Statistics Canada says the consumer price index in September was 2.2% per cent compared with a year ago. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

Annual pace of inflation slows to 2.2 per cent in September: Statistics Canada

Statistics Canada said Friday the consumer price index in September was up 2.2 per cent from a year ago compared with a year-over-year increase of 2.8 per cent in August

The annual pace of inflation slowed more than expected in September as increases in the price of gasoline continued to ease.

Statistics Canada said Friday the consumer price index in September was up 2.2 per cent from a year ago compared with a year-over-year increase of 2.8 per cent in August.

Economists had expected the September figure to come in at 2.7 per cent, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon.

The inflation report comes ahead of the Bank of Canada’s rate decision next week when it will also update its forecast for the economy in its monetary policy report.

The central bank, which aims to keep inflation within a target range of one to three per cent and adjusts its interest rate target to help achieve that goal, is expected to raise its key interest rate target, which sits at 1.5 per cent, by a quarter of a percentage point.

TD Bank senior economist James Marple said the softer-than-expected inflation report did little to alter TD’s expectation that the Bank of Canada will raise rates next week.

“I don’t think one month of soft price growth is going to change the Bank of Canada’s mind on a rate hike,” he said.

READ MORE: Bank of Canada holds interest rate at 1.5 per cent

Marple said the new U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement removed a key risk for the economy, but added challenges such as high household debt remain.

“There’s still are some underlying risks that have always been there and maybe weren’t in the spotlight because we were all focused on trade,” he said.

“We have very high household debt levels. We have mortgage rates that have been increasing and will continue to increase even with very little action from the Bank of Canada.”

Statistics Canada said prices were up in all eight major components for the 12 months to September.

The transportation index, which includes gasoline, was up 3.9 per cent in September compared with a 7.2 per cent move in August as gasoline prices last month were up 12 per cent compared with a 19.9 per cent increase in August.

However, the transportation group remained the largest contributor to the overall year-over-year increase in the index.

Food prices were up 1.8 per cent, while shelter costs rose 2.5 per cent. Alcoholic beverages and tobacco products were up 4.4 per cent.

Bank of Montreal chief economist Doug Porter noted the price of air fares, while up 7.4 per cent from a year ago, fell 16.6 per cent compared with the previous month. Hotel rates were also down 5.2 per cent compared with a year ago.

“With travel tours also down 3.2 per cent, that meant that tourism overall got a lot cheaper in Canada last month,” Porter wrote in a brief report, adding that vehicle prices were up just 0.7 per cent on a year-over-year basis.

“All of these soft sectors combined to clip core inflation as well, although the easing there was much less dramatic than in the headline tally,” Porter said.

The average of the three measures of core inflation, which look to strip out more-volatile items like gas prices and are closely scrutinized by the Bank of Canada, was 2.0 per cent in September compared with 2.1 per cent in August.

In a separate report, Statistics Canada said retail sales fell 0.1 per cent in August to $50.8 billion as sales moved lower in seven of 11 of the subsectors tracked by the agency.

Sales at gasoline stations were down 2.0 per cent, while clothing and clothing accessories stores fell 1.2 per cent. Motor vehicle and parts dealers saw sales increase 0.8 per cent.

Retail sales in volume terms were down 0.3 per cent.

Craig Wong, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Central Coast Regional District swears in new Board of Directors

There are three new faces representing our region and two returning directors

VIDEO: Black horse signals ‘sign of peace’ for Tsilhqot’in Nation

Justin Trudeau rides black horse provided by Cooper family

Trudeau exonerates hanged war chiefs of 1864 on B.C. Tsilhqot’in title lands

Prime minister rides horseback with Chief Joe Alphonse, TNG Chairman, to Xeni Gwet’in meeting place

B.C. Legions in need of young members to continue aiding veterans into the future

Lest we forget what thousands of men and women did to fight for Canada’s freedoms – but without new membership, many Legion chapters face dwindling numbers

Rain, snowfall warnings in effect across B.C.

B.C.’s Interior set to get hit with snow while the Lower Mainland is expected to see more rain

People flocking to Vancouver Island city to see hundreds of sea lions

Each year the combination of Steller and California sea lions take over Cowichan Bay

Protesters confront Environment Minister in B.C.

Protesters wanting more for killer whales confront Catherine McKenna

Humans reshaping evolutionary history of species around the globe: paper

University of British Columbia researcher had the paper published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society

Toronto ‘carding’ activist Desmond Cole stopped by police in Vancouver

Cole says his experience reveals what daily life is like for black and Indigenous residents

Commercial trucks banned from left lane of Coquihalla

B.C.’s Ministry of Transportation has introduced a new program that hopes to prevent accidents and closures on the Coquihalla Highway.

B.C. on track to record same number of overdose deaths as last year

128 people died of overdoses in September, bringing the total to more than 1,100 so far in 2018

B.C. firefighters rescue horse stuck in mud

‘It happens more often than you’d think,’ says deputy chief

Canadians more prepared for weather disaster than financial one: poll

RBC recommends people check their bank app as often as the weather app

B.C. dog owner sues after pet killed in beaver trap

A Kamloops man is suing the operator of a trapline north of the city after his dog died

Most Read