Inflation quickened for food & non-alcoholic beverages (29.77 percent vs 29.25 percent in February); health (19.72 percent vs 17.89 percent) and education (12.17 percent vs 11.60 percent).
On the other hand, prices slowed for housing & utilities (16.36 percent vs 16.56 percent); transport (15.16 percent vs 15.18 percent); furnishings (26.98 percent vs 27.59 percent); hotels, cafes and restaurants (19.60 percent vs 19.79 percent); clothing & footwear (10.97 percent vs 11.62 percent); miscellaneous goods & services (27.94 percent vs 28.08 percent); communication (10.49 percent vs 10.92 percent) and recreation & culture (20.08 percent vs 20.43 percent). At the same time, inflation was steady for alcoholic beverages & tobacco (at 2.71 percent).
Annual core inflation rate, which excludes energy, food and non-alcoholic beverages, alcoholic beverages, tobacco and gold, dropped to a seven-month low 17.53 percent in March 2019 from 18.12 percent in the prior month.
On a monthly basis, consumer prices inched up 1.03 percent, following a 0.16 percent increase in February and above market expectations of a 0.92 percent gain. Main upward pressure came from cost of food & non-alcoholic beverages (2.44 percent vs 0.90 percent); health (3.48 percent vs 2.48 percent) and transport (0.75 percent vs 0.71 percent).
Under the Turkey's New Economic Program (NEP) announced in September 2018, the country's inflation rate target is 15.9 percent in 2019, 9.8 percent next year and 6.0 percent in 2021. In January, the Central Bank of Turkey revised its year-end inflation forecast to 14.6 percent in 2019 from previous 15.2 percent. Then, it is projected to fall to 8.2 percent at the end of 2020 and 5.4 percent at the end of 2021, before stabilizing around 5 percent over the medium term.