In February, prices of food & non-alcoholic beverages increased by 2.2 percent year-on-year, reversing from a 0.3 percent drop in January. Also, cost rebounded for: recreation & culture (0.5 percent from -1.3 percent) and miscellaneous goods and services (0.1 percent -0.2 percent). In addition, cost went up at a faster pace for education (1.2 percent from 1.1 percent), while inflation was steady for: clothing and footwear (1.3 percent); health (0.4 percent) and restaurants and hotels (2.8 percent).
Meanwhile, cost went up less for: alcoholic beverages & tobacco (0.5 percent from 1.1 percent); housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels (1.4 percent from 1.5 percent); furnishing, household equipment & routine maintenance (2.9 percent from 3.3 percent) and transport (1.3 percent from 1.6 percent). On the other hand, cost continued to fall for communication (-0.2 percent from -0.2 percent).
For 2018, the Bank of Korea's sees inflation at 1.7 percent.
Core CPI, which excludes oil and agricultural products, increased by 1.2 percent in February, following a 1.1 percent gain in a month earlier.
On a monthly basis, consumer prices rose 0.8 percent, much faster than a 0.4 percent rise in the previous month while markets estimated a 0.5 percent increase.