Year-on-year, prices slowed for housing and utilities (7.1 percent compared to 8.3 percent in December); clothing and footwear (2.7 percent compared to 2.9 percent) and health (1.6 percent compared to 2.0 percent). In additon, inflation was steady for alcoholic beverages and tobacco (2.6 percent) and prices continued to fall for communication (-1 percent, the same as in December). Meanwhile, cost advanced at a faster pace for food and non-alcoholic beverages (6.3 percent compared to 6.2 percent); transport (0.3 percent compared to a flat reading) and furnishing and household equipment (1.8 percent compared to 1.3 percent). Also, prices rose further for restaurants and hotels (0.8 percent compared to 0.3 percent); miscellaneous goods and services (2.6 percent compared to 2.5 percent); education (2.5 percent compared to 0.8 percent) and recreation and culture (2.0 percent compared to 0.9 percent).
On a monthly basis, consumer prices increased 0.8 percent, following a 0.2 percent rise in December. Prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages increased faster to 1.7 percent from 0.2 percent in the previous month, mostly due to rice (+1.6 percent), maize grains (+1.5 percent) and fresh fish (+4.9 percent). Also, non-food items contributed to the rise, including school uniforms (+2.1 percent), kerosene (+2.2 percent) and diesel (+1.7 percent).
Annual core inflation, which excludes food and energy, went up 1.4 percent, after a 1.3 percent gain in the prior month.