SA’s consumer price index (CPI)- which the Reserve Bank uses to target inflation- was unchanged in November‚ increasing 5.6% year on year from the same figure in October‚ Statistics SA (Stats SA) said on Wednesday.

The inflation rate was expected to have come in at 5.6% year on year‚ according to a survey of leading economists by I-Net Bridge.

Forecasts among the nine economists ranged from 5.4% to 5.9%.

CPI increased by 0.2% month on month in November from 0.6% in October.

The annual average consumer inflation rate was 5.0% in 2011 from 4.3% in 2010.

The food and non-alcoholic beverages index increased by 1.2% between October and November. The annual rate increased to 7.0% in November 2012 from 6.3% in October 2012.

Fruit increased 3.7%; vegetables by 3.2%; meat by 1.1%; other food by 1.1%; cold beverages by 1.1%; bread and cereals by 1.0%; fish by 0.9%; oils and fats by 0.8%; sugar‚ sweets and desserts by 0.6%; and milk‚ eggs and cheese by 0.2%.

The hot beverages component decreased by 0.4%.

The household contents and services index was unchanged between October and November‚ but the annual rate increased to 3.1% in November 2012 from 2.8% in October 2012.

The transport index decreased by 0.2% between the two months‚ mainly due to a 10 cents a litre decrease in the price of petrol. The annual rate decreased to 5.5% in November 2012 from 6.1% in October 2012.

The miscellaneous goods and services index was unchanged between October 2012 and November 2012. The annual rate increased to 5.4% in November 2012 from 5.3% in October 2012.

The provinces with an annual inflation rate lower than or equal to headline inflation were Eastern Cape (5.6%)‚ Free State (5.5%)‚ Gauteng (5.5%) and Western Cape (5.4%).

The provinces with an annual inflation rate higher than headline inflation were North West (6.6%)‚ Mpumalanga (6.2%)‚ Limpopo (6.1%)‚ Northern Cape (6.0%) and KwaZulu-Natal (5.9%). - I-Net Bridge