In­fla­tion steady at 6.7% in Oc­to­ber

Sun Star Bacolod - - Business -

THE an­nual in­crease in the prices of goods and ser­vices re­mained at a nine-year high of 6.7 per­cent in Oc­to­ber 2018, the Philip­pine Sta­tis­tics Au­thor­ity (PSA) an­nounced on Tues­day, Novem­ber 6.

The Oc­to­ber head­line in­fla­tion rate was un­changed from Septem­ber’s 6.7 per­cent. It was, how­ever, faster than the 3.5 per­cent in Oc­to­ber 2017.

The Bangko Sen­tral ng Pilip­inas (BSP), in a state­ment, said the Oc­to­ber out­turn was con­sis­tent with its as­sess­ment that in­fla­tion had peaked in the third quar­ter, al­though it could re­main el­e­vated for the rest of the year.

“The start of the har­vest sea­son for rice and im­proved weather con­di­tions have con­trib­uted to some down­ward price pres­sures on rice prices. In ad­di­tion, the im­ple­men­ta­tion of non-monetary mea­sures is also ex­pected to re­sult in a de­cel­er­a­tion in food prices,” BSP said.

“More­over, the ap­proval of rice tar­ri­fi­ca­tion could lead to an ear­lier re­turn to within tar­get in­fla­tion in 2019 and to ap­proach the mid­point of the tar­get range in 2020,” the cen­tral bank added.

The PSA said there were mixed move­ments in the in­fla­tion rates of the dif­fer­ent com­mod­ity groups.

Six com­mod­ity groups posted higher in­fla­tion, namely hous­ing, wa­ter, elec­tric­ity gas, and other fu­els (4.8 per­cent); fur­nish­ing, house­hold equip­ment and rou­tine main­te­nance of the house (3.7 per­cent); health (4.3 per­cent); trans­port (8.8 per­cent); recre­ation and cul­ture (3.1 per­cent); and restau­rant and mis­cel­la­neous goods and ser­vices (4.2 per­cent).

Food and non-al­co­holic bev­er­ages in­fla­tion barely changed to Oc­to­ber’s 9.4 per­cent from Septem­ber’s 9.7 per­cent. The al­co­holic bev­er­ages and tobacco bas­ket was also sta­ble at 21 per­cent in Oc­to­ber from 21.8 per­cent last month.

Price in­creases slowed in corn and meat, both at 7.5 per­cent; fruits, 4.3 per­cent; and veg­eta­bles, 15.8 per­cent.

Other food groups reg­is­tered higher an­nual in­cre­ments in Oc­to­ber.

Pres­i­den­tial Spokesper­son Sal­vador Panelo said it could be con­sid­ered “good news” that the head­line in­fla­tion “did not go up.”

Panelo also be­lieved that the lat­est in­fla­tion rate re­flects the gov­ern­ment’s ef­forts to tem­per the ris­ing prices of goods.

“Con­sid­er­ing the directives of the Pres­i­dent, sup­ply­ing us with food and other mea­sures un­der­taken by the Depart­ment of Fi­nance, as well as agri­cul­ture and trade. I think that con­trib­utes,” the Palace of­fi­cial said in a press con­fer­ence.

“Ap­par­ently, the mea­sures un­der­taken by the gov­ern­ment has af­fected the in­fla­tion rate. So we will main­tain it,” he added.

On Septem­ber 21, Duterte signed an ad­min­is­tra­tive or­der and three mem­o­randa to tame the soar­ing prices of goods and ba­sic com­modi­ties.

Ad­min­is­tra­tive Or­der 13 aims to stream­line pro­ce­dures on the im­por­ta­tion of agri­cul­tural prod­ucts, while Mem­o­ran­dum Or­ders 26, 27, and 28 seek to sta­bi­lize prices of ba­sic agri­cul­tural com­modi­ties at rea­son­able lev­els and main­tain their suf­fi­cient sup­ply in the do­mes­tic mar­ket.

Asked if the gov­ern­ment ex­pects in­fla­tion to slow down in the next few months, Panelo said: “Well, hope­fully. It de­pends on the global con­di­tions.”

The Bangko Sen­tral ear­lier fore­cast the Oc­to­ber 2018 in­fla­tion to range from 6.2 per­cent to seven per­cent, while the Depart­ment of Fi­nance pro­jected it at 6.5 per­cent./sunstar Philip­pines

SUNSTAR FILE

AN­NUAL in­crease in the prices of goods and ser­vices re­main at a nine-year high of 6.7 per­cent in Oc­to­ber 2018.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Philippines

© PressReader. All rights reserved.