Kenya’s Inflation Inches Up to 6.9% in October: Unpacking the Numbers

Kenya’s economic pulse reveals a marginal uptick in inflation, standing at 6.9% in October compared to the 6.8% recorded in September. The Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) delves into the details, shedding light on the factors steering this nuanced economic trajectory.

Food Takes the Spotlight

The Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages Index witnessed a 1.3% surge between September and October 2023. KNBS attributes this uptick to the dichotomy in food prices, with certain items experiencing a hike while others saw a decline.

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  • Rising Stars: Potatoes (9.6%), tomatoes (5.4%), and oranges (2.8%) took center stage, contributing to the overall food inflation.
  • Price Plunge: On the flip side, the prices of sifted maize flour, fortified maize flour, and white wheat flour dropped by 4.1%, 3.2%, and 0.8%, respectively.

Housing and Utilities Mark an Upward Trend

The Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas, and Other Fuels’ Index saw a 1.9% increase during the same period. This surge is attributed to the escalating prices in essential utilities.

  • Fueling the Rise: Gas prices soared by 7.3%, electricity (200 kWh) by 5.0%, electricity (50 kWh) by 3.3%, and kerosene by 1.2% between September and October 2023.

Transportation Costs Hit the Gas Pedal

The Transport Index experienced a 1.5% boost, primarily fueled by the escalating prices of petrol and diesel, which surged by 2.7% and 2.2%, respectively.

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Survey Snapshot

The insights encapsulated in the report are distilled from comprehensive monthly surveys capturing the retail prices of a representative basket of household consumption goods and services. The meticulous data collection spans the second and third weeks of each month, encompassing a diverse sample of outlets across 50 data collection zones nationwide.

As Kenya navigates the economic currents, these inflationary nuances become pivotal markers, guiding policymakers, businesses, and households alike. The intricacies of food, utilities, and transportation costs unveil the intricate dance of economic forces, shaping the nation’s financial landscape. Stay tuned for more insights as Kenya’s economic narrative unfolds.