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Retail Price Index

Description

The Retail Price Index is an indicator that records the change in prices of a fixed basket of goods and services on a monthly basis, which depicts the fluctuation of the cost of living (inflation/deflation) on the island.

The fixed basket of goods and services consists of the items the average household would purchase.

No two households are exactly alike in their spending habits. Each purchases a different combination of goods and services for consumption. For example, it would be unusual for one household to use electricity, natural gas, as well as bottled gas (LPG), for cooking. However, these three types of fuel are all priced and included in the Index, since they are important in the expenditure of households in Barbados. Indeed, each household may experience a different rate of inflation.

Generally speaking, therefore, the ‘basket’ includes those goods and services, which are used by the majority of households and those, which are important in terms of the size of the expenditure made on them by households in the island.

The items in the ‘basket’, in addition to being representative of the spending habits of households, must also have their prices associated with specific quantities. Without the quantity/price relation, it would be extremely difficult to measure pure price changes.

Data

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Methodologies

Questionnaires

Weekly/Monthly/Quarterly Survey
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