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Manitoba's inflation rate falls in June

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Inflationary pressures continued to ease last month in Manitoba, with the province’s annual inflation rate falling to 1.5 per cent from 1.9 per cent in June.

That’s one of the lowest provincial inflation rates in the country, second only to B.C.’s 1.4 per cent, Statistics Canada data shows.

It’s also more than a half a percentage point below the national of 2.1 per cent, and down more than a full percentage point from May, when it was 2.6 per cent.

Some of the consumer items that cost less last month than in July 2013 were children’s clothing (down 8.5 per cent), furniture (down 8.4 per cent), non-alcoholic beverages (-5.3 per cent) and gasoline (down 3.9 per cent).

And some of the notable declines in the past month, were with children’s clothing (down 8.9 per cent), fresh or frozen beef (down 3.8 per cent), women’s clothing (down 2.8 per cent) and gasoline (down 2.5 per cent).

Nationally, the rise of Canada’s cost of living index was tempered in July, with the annual inflation rate coming in at 2.1 per cent.

That was down from June when the Consumer Price Index rose by 2.4 per cent over 12 months, a two-year high, according to Statistics Canada.

The agency says prices were higher in all 12 categories it looks at, with shelter costs leading the way, up 3.0 per cent in July, higher than the 2.9 per cent increase seen in June.

Food prices also rose by 2.9 per cent, matching the previous month’s up tick.

Fresh vegetables made up a big chunk of the increase in food prices, rising 7.5 per cent on a year-over-year basis.

In the volatile energy category, natural gas prices skyrocketed in July, up 20.4 per cent from the same month a year earlier. However, gasoline costs were up by just 2.1 per cent in July, backing off from the 5.4 per cent increase recorded in June.

Removing energy and food prices from the mix, Canada’s core inflation rate — the number the Bank of Canada looks at most closely — was up by 1.7 per cent in July, down from 1.8 per cent the previous month.

— Staff/Canadian Press

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