THE country’s inflation rate has further ballooned to eight percent in November 2022, over 3.9 percent as compared to last month and more than 50 percent higher during the same period in 2021, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) said on Tuesday, December 6, 2022.

The PSA said November’s inflation rate is the highest since November 2008.

From January to November 2022, the average inflation rate stood at 5.6 percent, exceeding the administration’s projected range of 4.5 percent to 5.5 percent inflation for the entire 2022.

“The sustained acceleration of inflation in November 2022 was mainly due to the higher year-on-year growth rate in the index of food and non-alcoholic beverages at 10.0 percent, from 9.4 percent in October 2022,” the PSA said.

“Also contributing to the uptrend is the higher annual increment in the index of restaurants and accommodation services at 6.5 percent, from 5.7 percent in October 2022,” it added.

The agency also noted the higher annual increments in the indices of the following commodity groups that also contributed to the increase of the overall inflation:

* Alcoholic beverages and tobacco, 10.6 percent;

* Clothing and footwear, 3.6 percent;

* Furnishings, household equipment and routine household maintenance, 4.5 percent;

* Health, 2.8 percent;

* Information and communication, .7 percent;

* Recreation, sport and culture, 3.3 percent;

* Education services, 3.6 percent; and

* Personal care, and miscellaneous goods and services, 4.2 percent

It said slower year-on-year increases were observed in the indices of housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels at 6.9 percent which was at 7.4 percent last month; and transport at 12.3 percent, while the index of financial services retained its previous month’s inflation rate.

The PSA said the core inflation, which does not include selected food and energy items in the headline inflation, also increased to 6.5 percent in November 2022, from 5.9 percent in October 2022 and from 2.4 percent in November 2021.

Food inflation at the national level further climbed to 10.3 percent in November 2022, from 9.8 percent in October 2022 and from 2.3 percent during the same month last year.

* Flour, bread and other bakery products, pasta products, and other cereals, 10.3 percent;

* Milk, other dairy products and eggs, 9.4 percent;

* Fruits and nuts, 6.2 percent;

* Sugar, confectionery and desserts, 38.0 percent; and

* Ready-made food and other food products not elsewhere classified (n.e.c.), 8.9 percent

“The uptick in the food inflation was primarily influenced by the higher annual growths in the vegetables, tubers, plantains, cooking bananas and pulses index at 25.8 percent; and rice index at 3.1 percent,” the agency said.

Slower annual growth was noted in the indices of the following food groups:

* Corn, 27.0 percent;

* Meat and other parts of slaughtered land animals, 8.6 percent;

* Fish and other seafood, 8.3 percent; and

* Oils and fats, 19.8 percent

(SunStar Philippines)