Inflation drops to 16-month low of 3% in April
MANILA, Philippines — Inflation eased to 3 percent year-on-year in April mainly as increases in prices of food and beverages slowed that month, the government reported Tuesday.
The latest Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) data showed that headline inflation last month was the lowest since the 2.9 percent posted in December 2017.
As of end-April, the rate of increase in prices of basic commodities averaged 3.6 percent, within the government’s 3-4 percent target range for the entire year.
“The slowdown was mainly brought about by the slower annual increase in the heavily weighted food and non-alcoholic beverages index at 3 percent. Slower annual increments were also noted in the indices of the following commodity groups: alcoholic beverages and tobacco, 9.9 percent; clothing and footwear, 2.4 percent; housing, water, electricity, gas, and other fuels; and furnishing, household equipment and routine maintenance of the house, both at 3.2 percent; health, 3.7 percent; and restaurant and miscellaneous goods and services, 3.5 percent,” the PSA said in a report.
However, month-on-month consumer price increases inched up by a slightly faster 0.2 percent last April from 0.1 percent in March.
Last year, the inflation rate reached a 10-year high of 5.2 percent due to new or higher excise taxes slapped on consumption under the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion (TRAIN) Law, skyrocketing global oil prices during the third quarter, and domestic food supply bottlenecks, especially of rice. /cbb
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