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6401.0.55.004 - Consumer Price Index Commodity Classification, Australia, 16th Series, 2011  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 04/07/2011  First Issue
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BACKGROUND


The September quarter 2011 issue of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) will incorporate the main outcomes from the recent major review of the CPI and the latest Household Expenditure Survey (HES) data. This will ensure that the CPI continues to be a reliable measure of price inflation for Australia. It will be published on 26 October 2011. For more information regarding the recent review of the CPI please refer to Outcome of the 16th Series Australian Consumer Price Index Review, Dec 2010 (cat. no. 6469.0).

A detailed list of changes, including tables showing correspondences between the 15th and 16th series commodity classifications can be found here:
<<http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/DetailsPage/6401.0.55.0042011>>

The new series will be the 16th series since the CPI was first compiled in 1960.

One of the outcomes from the review of the Australian CPI was to update the commodity classification used to categorise the goods and services acquired by households, to ensure it reflected contemporary wording and groupings. In doing so, one of the issues considered was the degree to which the current classification, the CPI commodity classification (CPICC), could be aligned with the United Nations Classification of Individual Consumption according to Purpose (COICOP). To enable greater international comparability of price inflation a review was undertaken to align where possible the CPICC with COICOP.

The major differences between CPICC and COICOP are:

  • The CPICC 'Housing' group includes new dwelling purchase by owner–occupiers, compared to COICOP which includes imputed rents for owner–occupier housing costs. The CPICC also includes property rates and charges as an inescapable cost of purchasing a house, where they are excluded from COICOP.
  • The CPICC ‘Food and non–alcoholic beverages’ group includes restaurant meals and take away foods. COICOP classifies restaurant meals and take away foods under a separate group ‘Restaurants and hotels’.
  • The CPICC 'Recreation' group includes air travel and hotel accommodation. COICOP classifies air travel in the 'Transportation' group and hotel accommodation in the 'Restaurants and hotels' group.

This paper presents the 16th series CPICC. As a result of efforts to more closely align the CPICC with COICOP, there has been considerable re–naming and some re–ordering of the items in the classification. The coverage of household expenditure remains largely the same as the 15th series CPI. However, indirect banking charges will be removed from the headline CPI, but will continue to be published (together with direct fees) as an analytical series.

Updated weighting patterns, the new series identifiers and a template of the new publication and associated tables will be published on 22 September 2011 in the Information Paper: Introduction of the 16th Series Australian Consumer Price Index, Australia, 2011 (cat. no. 6470.0).

The first issue of the 16th series will be for the September quarter 2011 Consumer Price Index, Australia (cat. no. 6401.0) and will be published on 26 October 2011.


TYPES OF CHANGES TO THE CPI CLASSIFICATION


Where changes to the CPI classification are indicated, they are one of the following types:

New Series:
  • Series that have been formed from splitting and/or combining existing series. (e.g. the 15th series expenditure classes 'Pork' and 'Bacon and Ham' are combined into the 16th series expenditure class ‘Pork’). Where a new series is created from a combination of two or more previously published series a back series will be calculated as far back as possible, based on available data.
  • Where a new series is created by splitting an existing series and the ABS does not have the back data readily available, the new series will begin with an index reference base period of June quarter 2011 = 100.0 (e.g. ‘Deposit and loan facilities (direct charges)’, previously part of Deposit and loan facilities).

Series continuing, minor compositional change:
  • Series with a small change to composition such as the removal of a small component. (e.g. the stationary component of the 15th series expenditure class ‘Audio, visual and media services’ will move to the 16th series expenditure class 'Newspapers, magazines and stationery'). A back series will be calculated as far back as possible, based on available data.

Series continuing, name change or move in the classification order:
  • Series that have been renamed and/or moved in the 16th series classification. The 15th series expenditure class ‘Tea, coffee and food drinks’ has no composition changes and has been renamedCoffee, tea and cocoa’ in the 16th series. The 15th series expenditure class ‘House Purchase’ has been renamed ‘New dwelling purchase by owner–occupiers’ in the 16th series and moved from 4.3.1 to 4.2.1. The series will be linked to the 15th series equivalent.

Discontinued series:
  • Series no longer available in the 16th series CPI. (e.g. ‘Deposit and loan facilities’). It will be partly replaced by a new series ‘Deposit and loan facilities (direct charges)’.


ABBREVIATIONS


CPIConsumer Price Index
CPICCConsumer Price Index Commodity Classification
COICOPClassification of Individual Consumption according to Purpose


INQUIRIES


For more information regarding the 16th series CPI Commodity Classification, or any questions relating to the CPI, please contact the Consumer Price Index Section, on 02 6252 6654.


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