WINNIPEG - Statistics Canada says the increase in the cost of living is accelerating at the fastest rate since 2003, and the increase is accelerating faster in Manitoba than it is in the rest of Canada.
The federal agency says the consumer price index rose to 4.7 per cent in Manitoba last month, compared to its 4.4 per cent year-over-year increase in August. Meanwhile, Canada’s price index was 4.4 per cent this September, compared to an increase of 4.1 per cent in August. Inflation in Winnipeg also outpaced the national rate of inflation, rising to 4.5 per cent in September, an increase of 0.3 per cent from August.
Economists note the price of food is one of the factors driving the surge in overall expenses, with the average grocery bill costing 3.9 per cent more than it did in September 2020. The year-over-year cost of putting a meal on the table this past August was just 2.7 per cent.
StatCan says fuel prices are another major contributor to the trend after drivers paid nearly 33 per cent more this past September to fill up than they did the same month in 2020. The federal agency says if it hadn’t included the price of gas in its calculation, the inflation rate would have been 3.5 per cent.