Still, inflation remained below the Chinese government’s target of around 3 percent for 2018.
The politically sensitive food inflation picked up to a seven-month high of 3.6 percent in September from 1.7 percent in the prior month, as prices rose at a faster pace for both fresh fruits (10.2 percent vs 5.5 percent in August) and fresh vegetables (14.6 percent vs 4.3 percent). In addition, cost of eggs continued to inncrease firmly (7.1 percent vs 10.2 percent); while prices of pork declined less (-2.4 percent vs -4.9 percent). Edible oil costs continued to drop (-0.6 percent vs -0.6 percent).
Meantime, cost of non-food increased by 2.2 percent, after a 2.5 percent rise in August. Cost continued to rise for: clothing (1.2 percent vs 1.3 percent); healthcare (2.7 percent vs 4.3 percent); education, culture & recreation (2.2 percent vs 2.6 percent); and other goods & services (0.7 percent vs 1.2 percent), while inflation was unchanged for household goods & services (at 1.6 percent). At the same time, cost rose at a faster rate for: rent, fuel & utilities (2.6 percent vs 2.5 percent); and transport & communication (2.8 percent vs 2.7 percent).
Annual core inflation, which excludes volatile items such as food and energy, slowed to 1.7 percent in September from 2 percent in the previous month.
On a monthly basis, consumer prices went up 0.7 percent in September, the same as in August and in line with market expectations. It remained the highest monthly figure since February.
Meanwhile, the producer price index in China increased by 3.6 percent from a year earlier in September 2018, after a 4.1 percent rise in the previous month and compared to market expectations of 3.5 percent. It was the lowest reading since April, as prices of means of production went up at a softer 4.6 percent (vs 5.2 percent in August), namely extraction (11.7 percent vs 12.1 percent), raw materials (7.3 percent vs 7.8 percent) and processing (2.9 percent vs 3.5 percent). Meanwhile, consumer goods inflation edged up to 0.8 percent from 0.7 percent); of which food production (0.9 percent vs 0.7 percent); clothing (1.1 percent vs 1.1 percent), daily use goods (1.1 percent vs 1.2 percent) and consumer durable goods (0.2 percent vs 0.2 percent). On a monthly basis, producer prices went up 0.6 percent.