The monthly cost of living index steadies but remains higher than a year ago

The PepperCube Cost of Living Index (CLI) for November remained the same as in October, registering 84.1 for the second consecutive month.

However, this points to an increase of more than 10 points on a year on year basis (i.e. compared with the corresponding index of November 2020).

At the same time, the gap between the CLI and Colombo Consumer Price Index (CCPI) has narrowed, reversing the trend of the previous three months, which suggests that the household burden has reduced to some extent.

Of those consulted by the pollsters, 93 percent (up from 88% in October) say the cost of living of their families has increased – moderately or otherwise – over the last 12 months.

Two percent of those surveyed state that the household burden has eased during this period whereas five percent are of the view that the cost of living has remained the ‘same as before.’

When consulted about their expectations with regard to the cost of living in the next 12 months, a clear majority (85%) of those surveyed point to an escalation of the household burden vis-à-vis expenditure.

Meanwhile, 10 percent of respondents anticipate no change in the future cost of living while only three in 10 feel there could be a reduction and the balance (2%) ‘don’t know’ or ‘can’t say.’

Moreover, 72 percent of the survey sample notes the likelihood of hardships 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.

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