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Canada's Inflation Was Crushing In September & Here's Where It Hurt Most

Food costs are up, so are tuition fees.

MTL Blog, Associate Editor
People cross rue Sainte-Catherine in downtown Montreal.

People cross rue Sainte-Catherine in downtown Montreal.

Canada's inflation rate edged toward 6.9% in September, marking a minimal decline from 7% the previous month. You'll still be shelling out at the grocery store, as food prices remained crushing and even showed the highest annual rate increase in over forty years. Non-food shopping costs rose faster than average hourly wages and tuition costs also saw a spike.

Food prices have been on the rise faster than the all-items Consumer Price Index for ten consecutive months now (since December 2021) with grocery inflation shelved at 11.4% in September. The price of meat went up the highest (+7.6%), along with dairy products (+9.7%), baked goods (+14.8%) and fresh vegetables (+11.8%).

Statistics Canada attributes the meteoric rise in food and beverage costs to weather disruptions, fertilizer and natural gas getting more expensive, and global market instability caused by Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

The overall cost of goods excluding food and gasoline went up 5.4%, rising faster than hourly wages, which only saw an average increase of 5.2%.

Tuition fees also went up by 2.3% in September compared with the same month in 2021 (+1.9%).

New home prices slowed in September (+7.7%) after seeing a boost in August (+8.4%) continuing a trend that started in May. "These movements reflect a general cooling of the housing market," said Statistics Canada.

Also on the decline were gasoline prices, which dropped 7.4% in September thanks to an increased supply of crude oil worldwide. Stabilizing pump costs were behind the slight overall inflation rate decline for the month, marking a third consecutive monthly price drop for gasoline in every province and territory except B.C.

While gas prices may be down, car costs are still up. Passenger vehicles went up 8.4% last month in part due to an ongoing shortage of semiconductor chips that power door locks and help control brakes, among other essential functions.

This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.

    Sofia Misenheimer
    MTL Blog, Associate Editor
    Sofia Misenheimer is an Associate Editor for MTL Blog focused on gas prices in Montreal and is based in Montreal, Quebec.
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