The consumer price index (CPI) of Vietnam’s biggest cities, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, saw slight increases in the last month of the year.

CPI rose by 0.61 percent in Hanoi and 0.73 percent in HCM City month-on-month, reported the cities' statistics offices.

Compared to one year ago, the figures increased by 17.98 percent and 15.86 percent, respectively.

In the capital city of Hanoi , among 11 commodity groups, only post and telecom services remained unchanged in comparison with last month.

The biggest price hikes in the month were seen in garments, hats and footwear, and cultural, entertainment and tourism services with increases of over 1 percent.

According to economic experts, the CPI rise was attributable to floods in the central provinces . In addition, prices of beverages, tobacco, garments, footwear and household utensils climbed due to increasing demands as Christmas and New Year festivals are approaching.

The rising trend in consumer prices began early this year with monthly rates ranging from 1.3 to 3 percent. This trend only showed signs of slowing down in the later half of the year, with increasing rate dropping to 0.2 percent in September, 0.13 percent in October and 0.29 percent in November.

In the whole year, the group of restaurants and food services saw the highest price hike of up to 31.32 percent.

In the southern economic hub, restaurants and food services also experienced the highest price rise of 1.29 percent, followed by household utensils with 0.88 percent and beverages and tobacco with 0.88 percent.

Commodities with slight price increases included garments, hats and footwear with 0.2 percent, transportation services with 0.1 percent and medicine and healthcare services with 0.04 percent.

Only prices of post and telecommunication services decreased by 0.21 percent./.