Inflation rate increased to 4.4 percent

Islamabad (Web Desk): Measured by Consumer Price Index, the headline inflation indicator slowed down to 4.4% in January, according to Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS).

According to the data releases by PBS, consumer price index (CPI) inflation was recorded at 4.6 percent in December ,2017 and 3.7 percent in January last year, on year-on-year basis.

There was a reduction of 30 basis points in core inflation when compared with December, according to the PBS.

Inflation is likely to further increase in the months to come due to the government’s decision of enhancing petroleum products prices. The government on Wednesday raised the prices of various POL products by 10.15 per cent.

It enhanced the rate of petrol by Rs2.98 per litre and high speed diesel by Rs5.92 per litre. The increase in oil prices would increase the transportation charges, which directly impact the prices of basic food commodities.

Core inflation increased 0.8 percent in January compared with a rise of 0.2 percent in December 2017, and an increase of 1.1 percent in the corresponding month of last year.

The PBS data showed that there was no major movement in core inflation during the past one year that remained in the range of 5.2% to 5.5%.

State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) said core inflation – that covers items whose prices are not volatile – continued to maintain its higher trajectory.

The central bank had also said that the average inflation for the current fiscal year is still projected to fall in the range of 4.5 to 5.5% but at the end of FY18 year-on-year inflation is likely to inch towards the annual target of 6%.

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