Construction prices grow slowest in 13 months


RETAIL prices of various construction materials in the National Capital Region (NCR) posted their slowest growth in 13 months, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

Based on the latest PSA data, construction retail prices slowed to 4.1 percent in March 2023, the slowest since February 2022 when retail prices of these commodities grew 3.3 percent.

In the first quarter, the growth of construction material prices averaged 5 percent, still faster than the 3.7 percent average in the same period last year.

“The annual increment of CMRPI in NCR decelerated further to 4.1 percent in March 2023 from 5.4 percent in February 2023, marking its eighth consecutive month of slower annual growth rate. In March 2022, its year-on-year growth was higher at 4.8 percent,” PSA said.

Relative to their previous month’s annual growth rates, six of seven commodity groups showed slower annual increases in March 2023, according to PSA.

Among the six commodity groups, the primary drivers of the continued downtrend of CMRPI during the month were the slower increases observed in several indices.

These commodities were led by miscellaneous construction materials, which grew at an annual rate of 6.2 percent from 9.3 percent in February 2023.

This was followed by plumbing materials with a growth of 2.2 percent from 4 percent in the previous month; and tinsmithry materials with 4.7 percent from 5.9 percent in the previous month.

However, slower annual increases were also noted in the indices of carpentry materials at 3.3 percent; electrical materials, 2.4 percent; and masonry materials, 3.6 percent.

“Meanwhile, the painting materials and related compounds index moved at its previous month’s annual rate of 5.6 percent,” PSA said.

The CMRPI is a variant of the General Retail Price Index (GRPI), which measures the changes in the prices used by retailers to sell their goods to consumers and end-users relative to a base year.

The market basket of the CMRPI is composed of 102 commodities and classified into seven major groups—carpentry, electrical, masonry, painting and related compounds, plumbing, tinsmithry, and miscellaneous materials.