CV inflation goes up to 2.7% in February

CV inflation goes up to 2.7% in February
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CENTRAL Visayas experienced a slight uptick in its inflation rate, reaching 2.7 percent in February 2024, according to data gathered by the Philippine Statistics Authority in Central Visayas (PSA 7).

PSA 7 chief statistical specialist Leopoldo Alfanta said on Tuesday, March 12, 2024, the figure is 0.2 percentage points higher than the 2.5 percent recorded in January this year.

In comparison, in February 2023, the region faced a higher inflation rate of 7.4 percent.

During the dissemination of the Summary Inflation Report for the Central Visayas Consumer Price Index for February this year, Alfanta highlighted at least three primary drivers of the inflationary uptick.

These included increases in the inflation rates of food and non-alcoholic beverages, transport, personal care, miscellaneous goods, and services.

Inflation, the gradual increase in prices of goods and services, leads to a decrease in the purchasing power of a currency. It reflects the percentage change in the average price level of goods and services over time, reducing the value of money as each unit buys fewer goods and services.

National level

At the national level, Alfanta said the country’s headline or overall inflation also increased to 3.4 percent in February 2024 from 2.8 percent in January 2024.

This brings the national average inflation from January 2024 to February 2024 to 3.1 percent. On the other hand, a year ago, the inflation rate was higher at 8.6 percent.

Among the 17 regions in the Philippines, 13 recorded faster inflation rates in February, and four regions recorded slower inflation rates relative to their January 2024 inflation rates.

The state statistician said Region 1 (Ilocos) and Region 2 (Cagayan Valley) recorded the lowest inflation rates at two percent, while the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao recorded the highest inflation at 5.3 percent during the month.

Key factors

Alfanta said the uptrend in the regional inflation for the last month was primarily brought about by the faster year-on-year increase on food and non-alcoholic beverages at 2.9 percent in February 2024 from 2.2 percent in January 2024.

Also contributing to the uptrend of the regional inflation was the faster year-on-year increase in the indices of transport with 1.8 percent from 0.5 percent; and personal care and miscellaneous goods and services with 4.7 percent from 4.4 percent, respectively.

Moreover, inflation rates for various commodity groups showed mixed trends last month. Inflation increased slightly in recreation, sports and culture, rising to 3.8 percent from 3.7 percent. Similarly, restaurants and accommodation services saw a slight uptick, reaching 4.4 percent from 4.3 percent.

However, several commodity groups experienced lower inflation rates, including alcoholic beverages and tobacco which decreased to 10 percent from 10.2 percent, while clothing and footwear dropped to 2.3 percent from 2.4 percent.

Housing, water, electricity, gas, and fuels also saw a decline, falling to 1.5 percent from two percent, along with furnishings, household equipment, and routine household maintenance, which decreased to 2.9 percent from 3.2 percent.

Meanwhile, health remained steady at 4.5 percent, information and communication retained its previous rate of 0.3 percent, and education services remained at 1.4 percent. Financial services saw no change, staying at -0.2 percent.

Food inflation

Meanwhile, the regional food inflation surged to 2.9 percent from January’s 2.1 percent. But this is much lower compared to February 2023’s 9.0 percent.

Last month, food contributed 36.3 percent to overall inflation.

The top three contributors were cereals and cereal products with an 89 percent share, meat and other parts of slaughtered land animals with 30.6 percent, and milk, other dairy products, and eggs with 20 percent.

Ready-made food and other products saw inflation, while milk, dairy, and eggs decreased. Oils and fats, along with fruits and nuts, also dropped. Additionally, fish and seafood declined faster, while sugar, confectionery, and desserts increased. / KJF


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