Hungarys inflation speeds up further to 5.9% y/y in Feb on energy, food prices.

By bne IntelliNews March 14, 2012
Hungary's annual inflation speeded up to 5.9% y/y in February 2012 pushed up by higher energy and food prices, the statistics office KSH said. The annual growth accelerated for the second consecutive month from 5.5% y/y in January and 4.1% y/y in December 2011 and was also above analysts expectations. On a monthly basis, prices increased by 0.8%, slower than in January, when they rose by 2.1% m/m. Excluding tax changes, prices increased by 3.9% y/y in February, faster than Januarys 3.6% y/y growth. As in the previous month, prices in all groups comprising the index were on an upward trend in February, with consumer durable goods the only exception (down 1.3% y/y). Food prices increased by 6% y/y, after rising 5.5% y/y in January. Costs in the group other goods grew at the fastest pace by 8.7% y/y, reflecting higher motor fuel prices. Prices of electricity, gas and other fuels were also up by 6.4% on the year, due to the growth in prices of purchased heat (11.2% y/y), butane and propane gas (10.4% y/y). Alcoholic beverages and tobacco prices speeded up to a 7.6% y/y increase in February, considerably faster than the 2011 average of 0.5% y/y. Consumer prices of services and clothing and footwear grew less that the average by 4.5% y/y and 4.8% y/y, respectively. Despite the higher-than-expected inflation in February, the market does not expect the central bank to raise the interest rates at its next monetary policy meeting. The bank expects the effect of the indirect tax increases to fade out in the coming months.

Hungarys inflation speeds up further to 5.9% y/y in Feb on energy, food prices.

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