Prices cool down in the summer heat
Brazil has reached some of the highest temperatures on record this summer. But prices have turned down the heat in consumer’s pockets. According to the Consumer Price Index (CPI), calculated by FGV’s Brazilian Institute of Economics (IBRE), prices of the most popular products and services during the summertime rose 3.79% on average. However, this rate was below the CPI-10 (4.18%) calculated in the same period – between February 2018 and January 2019.
Fruits recorded the highest variation (11.89%). The items Soft Drinks and Mineral Water Away from Home (3.83%) and Yerba Mate (6.69%) also rose above the “summer inflation”, according to the IBRE.
“The spike in fruit prices was the result of some crop issues. Harvests were affected by adverse weather conditions. This is added to the higher fruit consumption during this season, as people tend to have lighter meals and consume more juice and ice cream. Yerba mate prices went up due to the low supply of raw materials and higher demand”, said André Braz, IBRE’s CPI coordinator.
Some of the items that recorded lower prices were: Sunscreen (-3.39%), Air conditioning (-1.84%), and Diet/Light Soft Drinks (-1.44%). Despite the 0.82% drop in Beer prices, the product’s prices away from home rose by 3.61%.
According to the economist, consumers still have plenty of opportunities to save money, despite the hike in prices. “The secret is to prioritize seasonal fruits, which are cheaper during the summer due to the upsurge in supply. Another great tip is to bring your own juice, water, iced tea and beer to the beach, which is much cheaper than buying everything there”, said Braz.