Hair salons more expensive in July but overall inflation dips
Excluding tobacco, consumer prices declined 0.2% in July and 0.6% in the year
Hairdressing prices rose 7.3% on an annual basis, while personal grooming was 2.6% more expensive. Photograph: iStock
Prices charged by hairdressing salons and personal grooming establishments rose in July even as overall inflation dropped, new data from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) has shown. July also marked higher health insurance premiums.
The annual consumer price index figures show prices overall fell by 0.4 per cent in the year to the end of July as lower air fares and falling petrol and diesel prices cut the cost of transport by 4.3 per cent. That was partly offset by a rise in the price of cars.
Hairdressing prices rose 7.3 per cent on an annual basis, while personal grooming was 2.6 per cent more expensive. It is likely that at least some of these increases reflect Covid-related costs and investment.
Communications declined by 7 per cent year-on-year, fuelled by a fall in the cost of phone equipment and services.
There was an increase in the cost of education, which rose 4 per cent over the year, and a 3.5 per cent increase in the cost of alcoholic beverages and tobacco, driven by a rise in the cost of tobacco products. Health costs rose 3 per cent.
There was some relief for consumers, with the cost of car insurance falling over the year.
On a monthly basis consumer prices fell by 0.2 per cent, mirroring the decline seen in July 2019. Communications fell 2.6 per cent month to month, with transport down 1.9 per cent. Household equipment and maintenance costs rose 0.8 per cent over the month.
Hairdressing was 6.4 per cent more expensive month-on-month, while personal grooming prices were 1.4 per cent higher.
The CSO said the sub-index for services rose by 0.1 per cent in the year to July, while goods fell by 1.2 per cent. Excluding mortgage interest repayments, services remained unchanged in the year since July 2019.
Excluding tobacco, prices fell 0.2 per cent in the month of July and 0.6 per cent in the year. When mortgage interest was discounted, the monthly reduction in prices was 0.3 per cent, with the annual decline reaching 0.5 per cent.
Prices on average, as measured by the EU Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices, fell by 0.6 per cent compared with July 2019 and 0.2 per cent in the month.