Canada no longer has a negative inflation rate, Statistics Canada said Wednesday.
The annual inflation rate jumped a full point to edge above the zero line at 0.1 per cent in October, reversing an unusual situation that had existed since May in Canada where overall prices were lower than they had been a year earlier.
And it's unlikely the inflation rate will fall below zero again for some time.
For months, analysts said Canada's negative inflation situation was not worrisome because it was based solely on one phenomenon which was primed to be reversed - record gasoline prices last summer.
The correction began in October, as the gap between this year's gasoline prices and the previous year closed from 23 per cent to 13.1 per cent.
Statistics Canada noted that excluding energy prices, Canada's annual inflation rate would be 1.4 per cent.
In fact, the agency said six out of the eight major components it uses to measure inflation were higher last month than a year ago, including food, clothing, household operations and furnishings, health and personal care, recreation and alcohol and tobacco.
Food continues to be a main driver of higher inflation, although less so than a few months ago. Food prices were 2.3 per cent higher in October than 12 months earlier.
Meanwhile, transportation costs fell 3.1 per cent on the basis of lower gas prices and a 4.1-per-cent decrease in the cost of vehicles.
As well, shelter costs fell 1.6 per cent as a result of the persistent decrease in the cost of natural gas and other fuels, and lower costs for housing and mortgages.
It was a different picture when prices were compared to a month earlier.
Statistics Canada said on a month-to-month basis, prices edged down 0.1 per cent from September, as the price of ham and bacon fell 10 per cent and potatoes dropped 16.8 per cent.
The Bank of Canada core inflation rate, which excludes energy and some food items, rose to 1.8 per cent from 1.5 per cent, near the central bank's two-per-cent target.
Regionally, six out of 10 Canadian provinces had a positive inflation rate in October. In September, only Saskatchewan was in positive territory.