Tuesday, 14 August, 2018

WPI inflation hits eight-month low at 2.47% in March

Wholesale food prices in March fell 0.07% year-on-year compared with a 0.07% rise a month earlier WPI inflation hits eight-month low at 2.47% in March
Russell Knight | 16 April, 2018, 13:51

New Zealand's annual pace of inflation probably slowed in the first three months of the year as the government's "fees free" tertiary education policy comes into effect, removing price pressures in the sector.

Furthermore, index for "Non-Food Articles" group declined by 0.3 percent to 120.2 (provisional) from 120.6 (provisional) for the previous month due to lower price of guar seed (7%), niger seed (6%), floriculture (5%), raw cotton, cotton seed, skins (raw) and gingelly seed (3% each), copra (coconut) (2%) and linseed, castor seed, raw jute, groundnut seed and rape & mustard seed (1% each).

Deflation in vegetables was 2.70 percent, pulses (20.58 percent) and wheat (1.19 percent) in March.

Mr Brown highlighted BRC Shop Price Index data, which showed food prices dropping at their fastest rate in 18 months in March, which could have a larger impact on the inflation figure alongside fuel costs. The data for February had, in fact, shown a marginal softening in this basket.

The annual rate of inflation, based on monthly WPI, stood at 2.47 percent (provisional) for the month of March, 2018 (over March, 2017) as compared to 2.48 percent (provisional) for the previous month and 5.11 percent during the corresponding month of the previous year.

However, the price of raw silk, mesta and hides, sunflower, soyabean, fodder, raw wool, coir fibre and raw rubber moved up.

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The index for manufactured goods rose by 0.4 percent to 115.7 (provisional) from 115.2 (provisional) for the previous month.

The index for Non-Food Articles group declined by 0.3 percent to 120.2 (provisional) from 120.6 (provisional) for the previous month.

Inflation in onion continued to stay high at 42.22 per cent and in potato at 43.25 per cent.

The index for "Minerals" group declined by 2% to 119.7 (provisional) from 122.2 (provisional) for the previous month due to lower price of copper concentrate (14%) and phosphorite (1%).

Retail inflation, as per data released last week, slipped to a five-month low of 4.28 percent in March on account of a decline in food prices. It revised downwards forecast for retail inflation to 4.7-5.1 per cent for April-September and 4.4 per cent for October-March.

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