South Korea Annual Inflation Rate at 3-Month High in April
South Korea's annual inflation rate rose to 0.6 percent in April of 2019 from 0.4 percent in the previous month and above market expectations of 0.4 percent. It was the highest inflation rate since January, amid a faster rise in prices of food and a softer decline in cost of transport.
Year-on-year, prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages increased by 1.4 percent in April, accelerating from a 1.1 percent rise in March and marking the highest food inflation in three months. In addition, cost of transport decreased less (-1.9 percent vs -3.6 percent) and prices of alcoholic beverages & tobacco rebounded (0.1 percent vs -0.1 percent). Also, prices of household equipment & routine maintenance rose further (3.3 percent vs 2.4 percent) and cost of health was unchanged, following a 0.5 percent fall in March. On the other hand, prices slowed for housing & utilities (1 percent vs 1.2 percent); restaurant & hotels (1.9 percent vs 2.2 percent); and education (1 percent vs 1.2 percent) and inflation was steady for miscellaneous goods & services (at 1.5 percent, the same as in March). Additionally, cost fell for both recreation & culture (-0.4 percent vs 0.2 percent) and clothing & footwear (-0.2 percent vs flat reading in March); and prices of communication dropped at a faster pace (-2.6 percent vs -2.4 percent).
For 2019, the Bank of Korea targets inflation rate to be at 2 percent.
Core CPI, which excludes oil and agricultural products, increased by 0.7 percent year-on-year in April, the same as a downwardly revised figure in March and remaining at its lowest since December 1999.
On a monthly basis, consumer prices went up 0.4 percent in April, swinging from a 0.2 percent fall in March while markets had estimated a 0.2 percent rise.
5/2/2019 9:30:09 AM