21 Oct 2004

Inflation on the rise in American Samoa

9:15 am on 21 October 2004

The rate of inflation in American Samoa rose again at the end of the third quarter to 7.9 per cent, an increase of just over one and a half percentage points over the previous quarter.

The Commerce Department attributed the increase to rising costs of goods and services brought on by higher fuel and oil prices and the continuing demand for materials and supplies needed for home repairs and improvements.

The biggest increase was in the housing category which jumped 3.1 per cent.

Food prices jumped 1.8 per cent and transportation costs went up 1.4 per cent owing mainly to increases in the cost of oil and fuel, cars and vehicle maintenance.

Moderate hikes in the cost of stationery, and entertainment items contributed to a 1.6 per cent increase in the miscellaneous category.

Clothing costs hardly moved.

The Department of Commerce says the rate of inflation was very high and families can cushion the effects of the rising cost of living by substituting imported foods with subsistence farming and fishing.