Unless otherwise stated, any reference to CPI refers specifically to the weighted average of the 8 capital cities.

Key statistics

The in December 2018:

  • rose 0.5% this quarter
  • rose 1.8% over the 12 months since December 2017
  • rises in tobacco (9.4%), domestic holiday travel and accommodation (6.2%) and fruit (5.0%)
  • falls in automotive fuel (2.5%), audio visual and computing equipment (3.3%) and wine (1.9%)
Weighted average of 8 capital cities
CPI groups Change previous Qtr Change same period last year
All groups CPI 0.5% 1.8%
Food and non-alcoholic beverages 0.9% 1.5%
Alcohol and tobacco 3.2% 6.8%
Clothing and footwear -0.2% -0.7%
Housing 0.2% 1.5%
Furnishings, household equipment and services 0.5% -0.8%
Health -0.4% 3.3%
Transport -0.7% 2.8%
Communication -1.3% -4.3%
Recreation and culture 1.1% 1.7%
Education 0.0% 2.7%
Insurance and financial services 0.3% 1.5%
All groups CPI, seasonally adjusted 0.4% 1.8%
All groups CPI, trimmed mean 0.4% 1.8%
All groups CPI, weighted median 0.4% 1.7%

CPI groups

Display data as...

Quarterly percentage change to CPI groups - December quarter 2018
Group Percentage change for December quarter 2018
Alcohol and tobacco 3.2
Recreation and culture 1.1
Food and non-alcoholic beverages 0.9
All CPI groups 0.5
Furnishings, household equipment and services 0.5
Insurance and financial services 0.3
Housing 0.2
Education 0
Clothing and footware -0.2
Health -0.4
Transport -0.7
Communication -1.3

Main contributors to change

The following groups are the quarterly percentage change calculated in .

    • A 9.4% rise in Tobacco is the main contributor. This is due to a 12.5% increase in the federal excise tax and an increase in average weekly ordinary time earnings.
    • Over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, this group rose 6.8%.

    In seasonally adjusted terms, this group rose 1.6% this quarter. The main contributor is tobacco (+4.4%).

    • A 6.2% rise in domestic holiday travel and accommodation is the main contributor. This is due to the October school holidays and the lead up to peak holiday season.
    • Over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, this group rose 1.7%.

    In seasonally adjusted terms, this group rose 0.2% this quarter. The main contributor is domestic holiday travel and accommodation (+0.9%).

    • A 5.0% rise in fruit is a main contributor. This is due to seasonal rises in lemons, apples, bananas and strawberries.
    • A 1.6% rise in meat and seafood was also a contributor. This is due to drought conditions in the eastern states impacting supply and prices, particularly for lamb and goat which increased 6.8%.
    • Over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, this group rose 1.5%.

    In seasonally adjusted terms, this group rose 0.5% this quarter. The main contributor is lamb and goat (+6.3%).

    • A 2.5% fall in automotive fuel is the main contributor. This is due to falls in world oil prices flowing through to petrol prices.
    • Automotive fuel rose 3.3% in October, and fell 10.8% in November and 5.0% in December.
    • Over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, this group rose 2.8%. The main contributor is automotive fuel (+6.7%).

    In seasonally adjusted terms, this group fell 0.4% this quarter.

    • Rises in new dwellings purchased by owner-occupiers (0.4%), electricity (0.9%), maintenance and repair of dwellings (0.7%) and rents (0.2%) are the main contributors.
    • Over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, this group rose 1.5%.

    In seasonally adjusted terms, this group rose 0.4% this quarter. The main contributors are electricity (+1.3%) and new dwellings purchased by owner-occupiers (+0.4%).

    • Rises in furniture (1.8%) and child care (1.4%) are the main contributors.
    • Over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, this group fell 0.8%.

    In seasonally adjusted terms, this group rose 0.9% this quarter. The main contributors are furniture (+1.8%) and child care (+1.8%).

    • A 1.5% fall in telecommunication equipment and services is the main contributor.
    • Over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, this group fell 4.3%.
    • A 1.9% fall in pharmaceutical products is the main contributor. This is due to the cyclical effect of a greater proportion of consumers who qualify for subsidies under the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS), reducing out-of-pocket expenses.
    • Over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, this group rose 3.3%. The main contributor is medical and hospital services (+4.3%).

    In seasonally adjusted terms, this group rose 1.0% this quarter. The main contributor is medical and hospital services (+1.4%).

    • A 0.6% rise in insurance is the main contributor.
    • Over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, this group rose 1.5%.

    In seasonally adjusted terms, this group rose 0.2% this quarter. The main contributor is other financial services (+0.3%).

    • Falls in footwear for women (3.6%) and garments for women (0.9%) are the main contributors. This is due to ongoing competition and discounting activity in the retail industry.
    • Over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, this group fell 0.7%.

    In seasonally adjusted terms, this group fell 0.2% this quarter.

    • This group recorded no change this quarter.
    • Over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, this group rose 2.7%. The main contributors to the rise are secondary education (+3.3%) and preschool and primary education (+2.1%).

    In seasonally adjusted terms, this group rose 0.8% this quarter. The main contributor is secondary education (+0.9%).

    • Over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, tradables rose 0.6% and non-tradables rose 2.4%.

    In seasonally adjusted terms, tradables of the all groups CPI fell 0.1% and non-tradables rose 0.8%.

    Tradables

    This component of the all groups CPI fell 0.3% in the December quarter 2018.

    Tradeable goods fell 0.1% due to:

    • automotive fuel (-2.5%)
    • audio, visual and computing equipment (-3.3%)
    • wine (-1.9%)

    The tradable services component fell 0.7% due to:

    • international holiday travel and accommodation (-0.8%)

    Non-tradables

    • This component of the all groups CPI rose 0.9% in the December quarter 2018.
    • Non-tradable goods rose 1.5% due to the 9.4% rise in tobacco.
    • Non-tradable services rose 0.6% due to the 6.2% increase in domestic holiday travel and accommodation.
  • In the December quarter 2018, the seasonally adjusted all groups CPI rose 0.4%.

    Trimmed mean

    • Rose 0.4% in the December quarter 2018, following a revised rise of 0.4% in the September quarter 2018.
    • Rose 1.8% over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, following a revised rise of 1.8% over the twelve months to the September quarter 2018.

    Weighted median

    • Rose 0.4% in the December quarter 2018, following a revised rise of 0.4% in the September quarter 2018.
    • Rose 1.7% over the twelve months to the December quarter 2018, following a revised rise of 1.8% over the twelve months to the September quarter 2018.

Capital cities

CPI data is only collected in capital cities, therefore regional CPI information is unavailable. The overall change is weighted average of the capital cities.

CPI Index number and percentage changes for capital cities
Capital city Index number(a) this Qtr Change previous Qtr Change same period last year
Sydney 115.2 0.4% 1.7%
Melbourne 114.6 0.5% 2.0%
Brisbane 114.0 0.5% 1.5%
Adelaide 113.0 0.5% 1.6%
Perth 111.3 0.5% 1.3%
Hobart 113.6 1.2% 3.0%
Darwin 111.0 0.2% 1.2%
Canberra 113.1 0.7% 2.5%
Weighted average of 8 capital cities 114.1 0.5% 1.8%

(a) Index reference period: 2011-12 = 100.0.

    • Tobacco (+9.5)
    • Domestic holiday travel and accommodation (+5.5%)
    • Fruit (+5.0%)
    • New dwelling purchase by owner-occupiers (+0.8%)
    • Automotive fuel (-3.8%)
    • Telecommunications equipment and services (-1.5%)

    Sydney had the largest fall in automotive fuel of all the capital cities for the quarter.

    • Tobacco (+9.2%)
    • Domestic holiday travel and accommodation (+7.5%)
    • Fruit (+4.7%)
    • Fuel (-2.3%)
    • Wine (-2.7%)
    • Gas and other household fuels (-3.0%)

    The fall in gas and other household fuels is due to the seasonal switch to off-peak pricing in Melbourne on 1 November.

    • Tobacco (+9.9%)
    • Domestic holiday travel and accommodation (+8.2%)
    • Fruit (+3.6%)
    • International holiday travel and accommodation (-2.8%)
    • Audio, visual and computing equipment (-4.4%)

    Brisbane had the second largest fall in automotive fuel of all the capital cities for the quarter.

    • Tobacco (+9.3%)
    • Domestic holiday travel and accommodation (+8.2%)
    • Fruit (+3.6%)
    • International holiday travel and accommodation (-2.8%)
    • Audio, visual and computing equipment (-4.4%)
    • Tobacco (+9.2%)
    • Domestic holiday travel and accommodation (+6.8%)
    • Fruit (+4.7%)
    • Automotive fuel (-1.8%)
    • Rents (-1.2%)
    • Audio, visual and computing equipment (-4.3%)

    The fall in rents is due to continued weak demand and high vacancy rates.

    • Tobacco (+9.7%)
    • Domestic holiday travel and accommodation (+15.5%)
    • Automotive fuel (+1.6%)
    • Rents (+1.3%)
    • Audio, visual and computing equipment (-3.2%)
    • Telecommunications equipment and services (-1.6%)

    The rise this quarter is due to strong tourism demand from both domestic and international visitors, leading to price rises in airfares. Hobart is one of only two capital cities to record a price rise in automotive fuel. Low vacancy rates also caused price rises in rents.

    • Tobacco (+9.7%)
    • Wine (+11.5%)
    • Sports participation (+10.7%)
    • Beer (+1.5%)
    • Holiday travel and accommodation (-9.1%)

    The rise in wine is driven by the implementation of a price floor of $1.30 per standard drink of alcohol by the Northern Territory Government on 1 October 2018.

    • Tobacco (+9.7%)
    • Domestic holiday travel and accommodation (+3.1%)
    • Automotive fuel (+2.9%)
    • Audio, visual and computing equipment (-4.0%)
    • Telecommunication equipment and services (-1.5%)
    • International holiday travel and accommodation (-0.7%)

    Canberra is one of only two cities to record a rise in automotive fuel, this is due to an increase in retail fuel margins.

Understanding the CPI

For more information on what the CPI is and how it is used, see Understanding the CPI.

Using the CPI in contracts

For more information about how the CPI can be used in contracts, see Use of price indexes in contracts.

Data downloads

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Data cubes

All groups, index numbers and percentage changes

Groups, weighted average of 8 capital cities, index numbers and percentage changes

Groups, index numbers by capital city

Group, sub-group and expenditure class contribution to change in all groups indexes, by capital city

Group, sub-group and expenditure class, weighted average of 8 capital cities

Analytical series, weighted average of 8 capital cities

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Methodology

Scope

All consumption goods and services purchased by households in capital cities.

Geographical coverage

Data are available as a weighted average of capital cities and for individual capital cities.

Source

Pricing samples are taken for a range of good and services from a sample of retail outlets.

Transactions data from some outlets are also recorded.

Collection method

Information used to calculate the CPI is collected from:

  • personal visits to retailers
  • online and telephone calls
  • administrative data, including transactions data

Concepts, sources and methods

Descriptions of the underlying concepts and methods used are available in Consumer Price Index: Concepts, Sources and Methods, 2018.

History of changes

From the December quarter 2017, the CPI is re-weighted annually.

More about collection history