The latest figures from the Central Statistics Office show that consumer prices rose at an annual rate of 0.7% in October.

This follows a rise of 0.5% in September and a rise of 0.2% in August - the first annual increase in inflation since December 2008.

The CSO says that prices were unchanged in October compared to September, but the annual rate increased as there was a fall of 0.2% in October of last year.

The main factors behind the change was an increase in prices for prescribed drugs, higher charges for house and car insurance and more expensive electricity prices. But prices of clothes and footwear fell due to sales.

Breaking down the figures, they show that health prices rose by 1.1% in October, while housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuel prices increased by 0.4%. Prices of clothes and footwear fell by 0.7% while education costs decreased by 0.7% due to falls in third level tuition and maintenance costs.

The CSO says that housing, water and fuel prices have now risen by 9.4% since last October, while communications costs are up 2.9% and transport prices have increased by 2.1%. Clothing and footwear prices are down 7.2% in the year, while prices for furniture and household equipment are 2.9% lower. Prices for alcohol and tobacco are also 2.7% lower.

The annual rate of inflation for services was 2.1% in the year to October while goods decreased by 0.8%.