OTTAWA – Statistics Canada says higher gasoline prices helped push the country’s annual inflation rate in July to its highest reading since September 2011.
The federal agency says the consumer price index for July was up 3.0 per cent on a year-over-year basis compared with a 2.5 per cent increase in June.
Economists had expected a year-over-year inflation rate of 2.5 per cent, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon.
Consumer prices for gasoline were up 25.4 per cent, while the cost of air transportation was up 28.2 per cent compared with a year ago.
The result put inflation at the upper end of the Bank of Canada’s target range of one to three per cent. Earlier this summer, the Bank of Canada predicted inflation to move as high as 2.5 per cent – due to temporary factors like higher gas prices – before it settles back down to two per cent late next year.
The average of Canada’s three measures of core inflation, which leave out more-volatile data like pump prices and are closely watched by the central bank, rose last month to 2.0 per cent compared with 1.96 per cent in June.