Manufacturing prices rise in March
Computer and electronic goods show greatest increases
Manufacturing technicians pictured at Intel’s manufacturing facility in Leixlip. The price of computer, electronic and optical products rose 4.8 per cent in the 12 months to March, figures from the CSO show. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times
Prices paid for goods leaving Irish factories increased 0.9 per cent in March, according to data from the Central Statistics Office (CSO).
On an annual basis, manufacturing prices increased by 1.1 per cent, compared with an increase of 0.2 per cent in the year to February.
The price index for export sales increased by 0.7 per cent in the month of March, while the index for home sales increased by 1.2 per cent.
In the year there was an increase of 0.8 per cent in the price index for export sales, which can be influenced by currency fluctuations, and an increase of 2.1 per cent in the price index for home sales.
The price of computer, electronic and optical products increased by 1.3 per cent in the month, while basic pharmaceutical products and pharmaceutical preparations rose by 0.8 per cent.
Food products including bread and confectionary were up 0.6 per cent, but fish and fish products declined by 1.5 per cent.
According to the CSO, the annual change is largely attributed to the 13.2 per cent increase in the price of grain milling, starches and animal feeds, a 4.8 per cent increase in computer, electronic and optical products, and a 4.2 per cent rise in beverages.
Gains were partially offset by a 3.2 per cent fall in the price of electrical equipment in the year, and a 2.5 per cent fall in chemicals and chemical products. Pharmaceutical products and pharmaceutical preparations also fell by 1.6 per cent.
The yearly price index for mining and quarrying increased by 7.5 per cent while the monthly index for March increased by 2.4 per cent.
The price of building and construction materials has increased 2.1 per cent since March last year. The most notable price rises included a 12.6 per cent increase for stone, a 10.4 per cent increase for glass, and a 9.8 per cent increase for PVC pipes and fittings.
The price of paints, oils and varnishes fell by 5.2 per cent, while steel was down 3.6 per cent and hardwood fell 2.4 per cent.
Energy products fell in price by 1.7 per cent in the year, while petrol fell by 4.1 per cent. The monthly price index for energy products decreased by 0.9 per cent in March, while petrol fell in price by 2.3 per cent.