The cost of living records a marginal increase – exclusive survey

The PepperCube Cost of Living Index (PCLI) for April recorded a growth of 0.4 points from the previous month, rising to 75.4. Due to the fieldwork for the CLI not being conducted in March and April last year (as a result of the curfew imposed because of the pandemic), the latest edition of the index cannot be compared to the Colombo Consumer Price Index (CCPI) for this period.

Similar to the results recorded in March, nine in 10 respondents to PepperCube’s exclusive monthly survey say the cost of living of their families has risen – to a moderate degree or otherwise – over the last 12 months.

Another seven percent of survey respondents state that the household burden remained the same during this time while three percent report a reduction in expenditure.

Meanwhile, a notable majority (80%) of those consulted by the pollsters believe the cost of living is likely to escalate in the 12 months ahead – a decline from the 84 percent recorded in the preceding month.

In contrast, five percent of respondents expect a reduction in the future cost of living. Furthermore, 13 percent feel that it will ‘be the same’ while the balance (2%) ‘don’t know’ or ‘can’t say.’

And finally, half of the survey sample notes the likelihood of hardship ahead in terms of the ability to purchase non-food goods and services by considering their cost of living, economic status and saving capacity in the coming 12 months. This reflects a deterioration in the state of the people’s finances – in the previous month, only 46 percent referred to hardships ahead.

FOOTNOTE An index based on a monthly survey, the PCLI aims to measure and understand perceptions regarding the cost of living as opposed to reported or official inflation.