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DOF sees inflation down to 6.5% in October

By: - Reporter / @bendeveraINQ
/ 11:37 AM November 05, 2018

A customer buys vegetables at a market in Manila on October 5, 2018. The Department of Finance expects inflation to have eased to 6.5% in October as food prices stabilized. AFP

Inflation likely slightly eased to 6.5 percent year-on-year in October from the over nine-year high rate of 6.7 percent last September as food prices stabilized following the implementation of measures that boosted supply, the Department of Finance said.

DOF undersecretary and chief economist Gil S. Beltran noted that the month-on-month increase in headline inflation last month declined to 0.05 percent from the 0.8-percent rise in consumer prices in September compared with August prices.

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On a month-on-month basis, prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages dropped 0.17 percent in October, reversing the 1.75-percent hike a month ago.

While last month’s rice and meat prices still inched up 0.01 percent and 0.36 percent month-on-month, respectively, prices of fish and vegetables went down by 0.22 percent and 3.52 percent, respectively, from September levels.

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“This development comes as food prices start to stabilize: rice harvest season starts, rice imports by the National Food Authority and the private sector have started to come in, and the vegetable industry has partly recovered from the prior month’s severe weather disturbances,” Beltran said in an economic bulletin issued Sunday.

“Other administrative streamlining measures signed by President Duterte to boost food supply are underway,” Beltran added, referring to those aimed at easing importation.

Also, Beltran said it helped that power rates declined month-on-month in October, although global oil prices continued to move up.

“Domestic pump prices of diesel and gasoline peaked during the month as Iran sanctions threaten to push up international crude oil prices anew,” Beltran explained.

The government will release the October inflation data on Tuesday, Nov. 6. /cbb

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