Philippine central bank sees Dec annual inflation at 7.8% to 8.6%
MANILA – Philippine inflation was likely within the 7.8 percent to 8.6 percent range in December because of upward pressures from higher electricity rates and agricultural commodities prices, the central bank said on Thursday.
It will continue monitoring developments to prevent the further broadening of price pressures, it said, after inflation hit 8 percent in November. The Philippines’ statistics agency will release inflation data in the first week of January.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) had expected inflation to have reached its peak in October, but destructive typhoons saw the rate of increases in prices of basic goods and services to go even higher in November.
BSP Governor Felipe Medalla earlier this month said the central bank’s latest forecast puts the peak in December.
Higher electricity rates, the uptick in the prices of agricultural commodities, elevated meat and fish products, and higher prices of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) are presumed to have pushed inflation upward this month.
Upward pressure from prices of these goods countered the downward pressure from lower prices of petroleum products and rice as well as the appreciation of the Philippine peso against the US dollar.
– Ronnel W. Domingo
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