Consumer prices rose 1.13% m/m in March, the statistics institute TUIK announced on Thursday. This is well above the market consensus forecast of 0.85% m/m. CPI inflation was 0.43% m/m in February.
Annual inflation, consequently, quickened to 8.39% in March from 7.89% in February. Food prices were up 2.1% m/m (10.12% y/y) in the month, adding 0.51 points to the headline inflation. Food inflation was 0.13% m/m in February. Clothing prices rose 2.49% m/m, adding another 0.18ppt to the headline inflation. Transportation costs increased 0.88% m/m in the month, leading to an annual inflation of 13.74% for this item. Automobile prices rose 4.47% m/m, data of TUIK also showed.
All major core inflation indexes showed noticeable increases in March. One of the Central Bank’s favourite core inflation indicators, the so-called I-Index (which excluded the prices of energy, food and non-alcoholic beverages, alcoholic beverages and tobacco products and gold) rose 1.2% m/m (9.32 y/y).
TUIK data also showed that the rate of increase in domestic producer prices eased to 0.74% m/m in March from 1.38% m/m in February. The annual inflation in producer prices decelerated to 12.31% from 12.4%.
On the back of March data, the annual inflation remained above the government’s 2014 target of 5%. The Central Bank already said it did not expect any decline in inflation until June, underlining upward risks on the inflation outlook, and lagged impact of the exchange pass-through on core inflation.
|March CPI by Main Expenditure Groups (%)|
|Food and non-alcoholic beverages||24.45||2.10||10.12|
|Alcoholic beverages and tobacco||5.29||-0.02||3.10|
|Clothing and footwear||7.17||2.49||7.30|
|Furnishings, household equipment||7.52||0.90||7.64|
|Recreation and culture||3.36||0.68||7.97|
|Hotels, cafes and restaurants||6.58||1.33||12.51|
|Miscellaneous goods and services||4.28||1.20||5.27|
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