Changes to the CPI basket
16 items have been added and 10 items removed from the CPI basket for 2019 to ensure that it remains a representative one, and one which reflects changing household spending patterns. Each year the basket of around 700 goods and services is adjusted so that it can be trusted to produce inflation figures which are a fair reflection of the impact of price changes on household budgets, and on the ‘cost of living’ for typical consumers. The changes include:
Additions and changes to the basket
Popcorn has been added to reflect increased spending on this item.
Peanut butter has been added to reduce the weight of the only other item in this sub-category – margarine.
Flavoured Tea, such as herbal tea
This has been added to reflect it increasing popularity.
Regular Cola Drink
This has been replaced by two cola items – regular and sugar free. This is to help monitor the effects of the new sugar tax on consumption trends.
Adult hats and caps
This item was introduced to diversify the range of items in the relevant category as well as reflect changing trends.
This item replaces a three-piece non-leather suite, given that consumers now favour of corner units or settees.
Bakeware – (baking tray and roasting tin)
This new item reflects the growing popularity of home baking.
Replaces a crockery set, given less popularity in buying dining sets as opposed to individual items.
Washing liquid and gel
This replaces washing powder, which is less popular.
This replaces brake fitting, as it is easier to undertake consistent price comparisons.
Portable speakers such as bluetooth speakers
This replaces traditional hi-fi, which, according to the ONS, was becoming increasingly difficult to price.
Smart speakers, including Amazon Echo and Google Home, have been added to reflect increasing popularity.
Dog treats were added due to their growing popularity with dog owners.
Child’s fiction books (6-12 years old)
The ONS noted that books in general, and this particular category, are an under-represented part of the CPI basket
This was introduced to increase the representation of technology in the personal care class.
Removed from the basket
In addition to the above changes, the following additional items were removed:
Removed from an over-covered area of the basket. Envelopes are a low weighted item as a result of the increasing use of new technology for communication.
Unit Trust initial charge
Unit trust (initial) charges were removed as many unit trusts no longer applying an initial charge.