Prices stabilise in Moldova
Consumer prices in Moldova (chart) decreased marginally for the third consecutive month in August, stabilising after the sharp 37% surge accumulated in 2022 and in the first five months of 2023.
Annual inflation dropped below 10% y/y for the first time since November 2021, to 9.7% y/y in August.
The annual inflation rate will further decrease to 9.2% by the end of Q3 this year and move within the target band of 5%+/-1.5pp by the end of the year, according to the National Bank of Moldova (BNM) forecast.
Moldova’s monetary authority took a dovish stance this year as inflation was plummeting, dragged down by demand-side factors. It cut the policy rate twice in May and June by 4 percentage points (pp) each, bringing it to 6%.
“Inflation no longer poses a risk to investment and consumption. Inflationary conditions are favourable for economic growth. The monetary conditions that the central bank has created will contribute to the growth of the economy,” BNM's governor Octavian Armasu said.
Decline of 6.5% y/y is second worst in EU.
Retail sales rose by 0.9% m/m in October, recouping the losses incurred over the previous three months.
Czech retail sales decreased by 1.4% year on year and increased by 0.6% month on month in October, in the softest monthly drop in a year and a half. The drop in sales eased compared to the 4% y/y drop in September and the 2.8% y/y drop in August.
Despite lapse in demand, firms said to retain positive attitude on 12-month outlook for activity, which remained historically elevated. Inflationary pressures continued to retreat.
Industrial prices in Romania increased by 2.4% in September-October.
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