PSA: Inflation slightly eases in February



The state statistics bureau on Tuesday said that the country’s inflation slightly decelerated with transport-related prices including gasoline, diesel and motorcycles slowing down.

According to the Philippine Statistics Authority, the consumer price index rose 8.6 percent in February.

This is actually a tad slower than the 8.7 percent from previous month.

The said inflation for February was within the projection of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas to 8.5 to 9.3 percent.

But it is way above the 2 to 4 percent target range of the government.

The PSA noted that for the transport sector, it slowed to 9 percent, with slower increases in the prices of gas at 3.8 percent from 9.6 percent, diesel at 14.2 percent from 30.5 percent and motorcycles to 2.7 percent from 3.5 percent.

“Isang bumaba talaga yung transport, siya ang main contributory sa pagbaba ng inflation. Sa March titingnan natin, malaking contributory ulit ay transport, may announced na pagtaas ngayong linggo.,” National Statistician Dennis Mapa said.

But the so-called core inflation on the other hand, which excludes volatile food and fuel prices, went up to 7.8 percent in February from 7.4 percent the previous month.

The core inflation for February is the highest since March 1999 when it recorded 8.1 percent.

Mapa said that inflation for the bottom 30 households likewise accelerated to 9.7 percent, which is higher than the headline inflation, and was driven by food inflation.

The BSP meanwhile said that they expect the inflation to stay above target for the year before it reverts to the 2 to 4 percent range by 2024.

“Inflation is projected to remain above the target until early Q4 2023 before decelerating close to the low end of the target range by January 2024 due mainly to negative base effects and the likely decline in global oil and non-oil prices. The inflation path continues to be driven by supply-side factors as pressures from elevated global and domestic commodity prices broaden,” the BSP said in a statement.

Catherine R. Cueto

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