The cost of living for the average household in New Zealand rose by 7.2% in the 12 months to June this year, according to new figures published on Wednesday by Stats NZ.
This is measured by Stats NZ's quarterly household living-costs price indexes (HLPIs).
Stats NZ collects data to see the effect of economic changes on different types of households throughout the country. The HLPI measures how spending patterns alter across 13 different household groups: five income groups, five expenditure groups, superannuitants, Māori and beneficiaries. An "all-households" measure is also published, the New Zealand Herald reports.
The main difference between this data and the Consumer Price Index (CPI) – which revealed annual inflation stood at 6.0% for the year to June – is related to housing.
Whereas the CPI measures the costs of constructing houses, which rose 7.8% over the year, the HLPIs gauge mortgage interest rate costs, which revealed a 28.8% increase over the 12 months.
However, although the most recent HLPIs figure is higher than the CPI inflation figure, it has still moderated, edging down from 7.7% in Q1 and a high of 8.2% in Q4 last year.
In addition, food prices have been a key contributor to the latest figure.
"Food prices increased by 12.7% for the average household," said Stats NZ's consumer prices manager, James Mitchell.
"This was the main contributor to higher living costs for most household groups."
Mitchell went on to add: "Higher prices for interest payments and grocery food were the biggest contributors to the 7.2% increase.
"These were partly offset by lower prices for private transport supplies and services, things that keep your vehicle running, such as petrol and diesel."
Although those in all household types would feel the impact of the cost-of-living crisis, the HLPI data reveals the highest-spending households, at 7.8%, have experienced the largest rise in living costs, as well as those with the largest household incomes, at 7.7%.
"The reason for that is because those [households] are more likely to be households who have got homes with mortgages, and with those big increases recently, they have seen some very large increases in their living costs," said Westpac senior economist Satish Ranchhod.
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