Kenyans spent more on the month of January than in last five months after inflation hits 4.83 percent

Kenyans spent more on daily food items such as Kales (sukuma wiki), beef, cabbages and irish potatoes.

Inflation in January rose for the first time in five months, driven by higher prices of food, electricity and fuel.

Inflation inched up to 4.83 percent in January from 4.5 percent last month, according to statistics by Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) released on Wednesday.

“Between December 2017 and January 2018 food and non-alcoholic drinks’ index increased by 1.69 per cent mainly due to increases in prices of some foodstuffs which outweighed the falls in others,” the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) said in a statement.

Three tomatoes which usually cost Sh20 for instance went up by between Sh5 and Sh10 forcing some households to forego the nutritious fruit altogether.

Moving from one place to another as well as keeping the lights on was also on the climb in January due to rising fuel pump prices.

Inflation has been dropping since September, largely helped by government temporary subsidies that expired this month on maize flour – the country’s staple and may explain why the cost of living shoot up.

The subsidies were introduced by the government in May and were meant to cushion the poor from high cost of living after rains failed  last year resulting to drought.

Food takes up the largest share (36 per cent) of the basket of goods that is used to calculate inflation, making it the main driver of the cost of living, followed by utilities such as rent, water, electricity, gas and fuels at 18 per cent.

At 4.83 per cent, the January inflation is  however still within the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) preferred range of between 2.5 per cent and 7.5 per cent.


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