Hungary's annual consumer price growth speeded up to 1.8% in May 2013 from April's record low of 1.7% y/y, the statistics office said. The reading was a touch below market expectations for a growth of 1.9% y/y. On a monthly basis, consumer prices in the country decreased by 0.1%, after rising 0.3% m/m in the previous two months.
Prices in the group of electricity, gas and other fuels declined by 8.5% y/y, with costs of natural gas and electricity decreasing by 10% y/y, while those of purchased heat dropping even faster - by 11.7% y/y. Consumer durable goods extended their downward trend, dropping 1.8% on the year, reflecting continued weak household demand. Prices motor fuels declined by 0.7% y/y in May. Prices of clothing and footwear reversed to a 0.2 % y/y drop after increasing in April.
The growth in food prices speeded up to 3.7% in May, from 3.4% y/y in the previous two months. Prices of alcohol beverages and tobacco products rose by 9.8% y/y, after a 10.8% y/y growth the month before. Costs of services advanced by 4.1% y/y in the month.
The Hungarian central bank eased its monetary policy, cutting the key rate by 0.25pps in each of the last ten months to 4.50% as of May 28. The Monetary Council considered that inflation fell below the central bank’s inflation target already at the beginning of 2013 due to reduced utilities prices and the strong downward pressure stemming from subdued demand. The bank will consider a further reduction of interest rates if the medium-term outlook for inflation remains in line with the bank’s 3% target and the improvement in financial market sentiment is sustained.
|Consumer prices, % y/y|
|Alcoholic beverages, tobacco||13.5||13.1||14.8||11.7||10.8||9.8|
|Clothing and Footwear||1.4||0.8||-0.4||-0.4||0.4||-0.2|
|Consumer durable goods||-1.8||-2.1||-2.3||-2.2||-1.9||-1.8|
|Electricity, gas and other fuels||4.7||2.4||-7.7||-8.1||-8.4||-8.5|
|Other goods incl. motor fuels and lubricants||2.9||1.3||2.6||1.5||-0.5||-0.7|
Bucharest listed Digi Communications announced on July 21 that its Hungarian subsidiary, Digi Tavkozlesi es Szolgaltato, has signed an agreement to acquire Hungarian broadband and telephone provider ... more
Senior Czech judges on July 21 denounced Poland's judicial overhaul as an attack on the rule of law. With big street protests in the Czech Republic's neighbour seemingly gathering momentum – 120 ... more
Hungary's MOL announced on July 20 that it has struck licensing deals with Germany's Evonik Industries and Thyssenkrupp that will be essential in its plan to roll out a $1.9bn investment in ... more