Selected Living Cost Indexes, Australia

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Living Cost Indexes (LCIs) measures the price change of goods and services and its effect on living expenses of selected household types

Reference period
September 2022

Key statistics

  Jun Qtr 2022 to Sep Qtr 2022Sep Qtr 2021 to Sep Qtr 2022
Weighted average of eight capital cities, All groups% change% change
Selected Living Cost Indexes (LCIs) - Household type:  
 Pensioner and beneficiary LCI (PBLCI)1.86.4
 Employee LCI2.66.7
 Age pensioner LCI1.86.5
 Other government transfer recipient LCI1.86.3
 Self-funded retiree LCI1.96.3
Consumer Price Index (CPI)1.87.3

In the September 2022 quarter, all five LCIs rose:

  • Employee households recorded the largest quarterly rise (+2.6%) across the five household types, and the largest rise for this household type since the September 2000 quarter.
  • Mortgage interest charges makes up a higher proportion of expenditure for Employee households compared to the other household types. Just under half of the increase in living costs experienced by Employee households came from increases in mortgage interest charges (see chart below). Mortgage interest charges rose this quarter as banks passed on the Reserve Bank of Australia’s (RBA’s) successive cash rate rises to interest rates for variable and new fixed rate home loans.
  • The remaining four household types recorded rises between 1.8% and 1.9%. Food and non-alcoholic beverages and Housing were the main contributors for all household types.
  • Supply chain disruptions, increased transport and input costs, and floods affected many Food series, notably Meals out and takeaway foods and Fruit and vegetables.
  • Gas and other household fuels and Electricity prices rose reflecting annual reviews with retailers passing through higher wholesale prices. The rise in Electricity was partially offset by the introduction of electricity rebates in Western Australia, Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory this quarter.
  • Furnishings, household equipment and services also contributed to the rises for all household types, driven by Furniture due to higher freight and raw material costs.

(a) Housing includes Rents, Utilities and Other housing (Property rates and Maintenance and repair of the dwelling).
(b) Remaining contributors includes Alcohol and tobacco, Clothing and footwear, Health, Transport, Communication, Recreation, Education and Insurance and financial services (excluding Mortgage interest).

Over the past twelve months all LCIs rose by between 6.3% and 6.7%:

  • All household types recorded their largest annual rise on record.  The Pensioner and beneficiary household series commenced in 2008. The series for the remaining four household types commenced in 1999.
  • Food and non-alcoholic beverages was the main contributor for all five household types, due to price rises for Fruits and vegetables and Dairy and related products.
  • Employee households recorded the largest annual rise (+6.7%). The rise is mainly due to Mortgage interest charges rising over the year, reflecting increased home loan interest rates. Excluding Mortgage interest charges, the index for this household type would have risen 5.9% through the year.
  • Self-funded retiree and Other government transfer recipient households recorded the smallest annual rises (+6.3%). Self-funded retiree households have a lower proportion of expenditure for Mortgage interest charges and Food and non-alcoholic beverages.
  • Other government transfer recipient households recorded the smallest annual rise for Health. Prices for Pharmaceutical products fell due to an increase in the proportion of consumers who qualify for subsidies under the Pharmaceuticals Benefits Scheme (PBS).

Main contributors to change

Percentage change, commodity group - June Quarter 2022 to September quarter 2022
Weighted average of eight capital citiesPensioner and beneficiary LCIEmployee LCIAge pensioner LCIOther government transfer recipient LCISelf-funded retiree LCIConsumer Price Index (CPI)
Food and non-alcoholic beverages3.
Alcohol and tobacco1.
Clothing and footwear-0.3-0.1-0.3-0.3-0.2-0.2
Housing (a)
Furnishings, household equipment and services2.
Recreation and culture1.
Insurance and financial services (b)5.512.
All groups1.

(a) New dwelling purchase by owner-occupiers are included in the CPI but excluded from the Selected Living Cost Indexes.
(b) The Selected Living Cost Indexes includes interest charges and general insurance. Interest charges are excluded from the CPI and general insurance is calculated on a different basis.

For further analysis on commodity group contributors, please see the latest release of the Consumer Price Index.

Data downloads

Table 1. All groups, index numbers and percentage changes, by household type

Table 2. Commodity groups, index numbers, percentage changes and points contributions, by household type

Table 3. Gross insurance, mortgage interest and consumer credit, index numbers and percentage changes, by household type

Use of price indexes in contracts

Price indexes published by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) provide summary measures of the movements in various categories of prices over time. They are published primarily for use in Government economic analysis. Price indexes are also often used in contracts by businesses and government to adjust payments and/or charges to take account of changes in categories of prices (Indexation Clauses).

Use of Price Indexes in Contracts that sets out a range of issues that should be taken into account by parties considering including an Indexation Clause in a contract using an ABS published price index.

Frequently asked questions

The Frequently Asked Questions page that has answers to a number of common questions to do with price indexes and the Consumer Price Index, in particular.

Previous catalogue number

This release previously used catalogue number 6467.0.

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