Argentina has two consumer prices indexes, and they differ considerably. In effect during August the so called congressional index doubled the official rate: the National Urban Consumer Price (IPCNU) released by the stats office Indec, in the eighth month of the year was 1,3%, which means inflation in the first eight months stands at 18,2%.
However the Congressional index for August reached 2.65%, which means that in the last twelve months consumer prices have risen 40.38%. The congressional index is an average of private consultants that is presented every month by members of the opposition belonging to the Freedom of Expression Lower House committee.
According to Indec, Housing and basic services lead the increase with 2.6%, followed by Education with a 2.1% rise and Housing equipment with 1.3%. Foods and beverages jumped 1.2%, and Transport and communications rose 1.1%.
Meanwhile, also according to Indec, wholesale prices went up 1.4% in August and accumulate a yearly increase of 22.3%.
The official stats show that the CPI took off in January with a 3.7% rise and gradually dropped to the 1.3% registered in August. The deceleration could have to do with the implementation of the Argentine government-sponsored “Price Watch” program, though the goods that are not listed in the plan register 20% increases in the year.
The congressional index was presented in Argentina's Lower House annex with the attendance of Deputies Patricia Bullrich, Pablo Tonelli, Cornelia Smidt Liermann, Federico Sturzenegger, Patricia Giménez, Roberto Pradines and Carlos Brown.
Lower House member Gimenez claimed that not only inflation was too high but a detailed analysis of the different items shows that food remains the most volatile and climbing which naturally affects the most vulnerable members of the community.