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Metadata Glossary

Indicator NameConsumer price index (2010 = 100)
Long definitionConsumer price index reflects changes in the cost to the average consumer of acquiring a basket of goods and services that may be fixed or changed at specified intervals, such as yearly. The Laspeyres formula is generally used. Data are period averages.
SourceInternational Monetary Fund, International Financial Statistics and data files.
TopicFinancial Sector: Exchange rates & prices
Base Period2010
Statistical concept and methodologyConsumer price indexes are constructed explicitly, using surveys of the cost of a defined basket of consumer goods and services.
Development relevanceA general and continuing increase in an economy’s price level is called inflation. The increase in the average prices of goods and services in the economy should be distinguished from a change in the relative prices of individual goods and services. Generally accompanying an overall increase in the price level is a change in the structure of relative prices, but it is only the average increase, not the relative price changes, that constitutes inflation. A commonly used measure of inflation is the consumer price index, which measures the prices of a representative basket of goods and services purchased by a typical household. The consumer price index is usually calculated on the basis of periodic surveys of consumer prices. Other price indices are derived implicitly from indexes of current and constant price series.
Limitations and exceptionsConsumer price indexes should be interpreted with caution. The definition of a household, the basket of goods, and the geographic (urban or rural) and income group coverage of consumer price surveys can vary widely by country. In addition, weights are derived from household expenditure surveys, which, for budgetary reasons, tend to be conducted infrequently in developing countries, impairing comparability over time. Although useful for measuring consumer price inflation within a country, consumer price indexes are of less value in comparing countries.
License URL
License TypeCC BY-4.0