China's Inflation Rate Rises in Janaury

The consumer price index (CPI) in China increased to 4.9 percent in January year-on-year, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said on February 15. 2/15/2011 11:34:25 AM

"The extremely cold weather and the Spring Festival holiday spending pushed prices up 1 percent from a month ago," NBS said.

However, the inflation rate stood 0.2 percent below the 28-month reached in November last year.

Food prices surged 10.3 percent in January on annual basis, with prices of grain witnessing an increase of 15.1 percent. While fruit prices increased sharply by 34.8 percent, vegetable price advanced 2 percent.

The NBS also said that it had decreased the weighting of food prices on the CPI by 2.21 percentage points, while increasing the living costs by 4.22 percentage points following a surge in the nation's home prices.

New loans by state-owned banks in China totaled 1.2 trillion yuan ($182.3 billion) by January 24, more than double the amount lent in December 2010, the China Business News reported.

The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) increased reserve rates for banks seven times in the past 12 months and hiked interest rates thrice since October.