Year-on-year, prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages increased by 0.6 percent in August, slowing markedly from a 1.9 percent rise in July. It was the lowest food inflation since October 2015, owing to prices of rice which posted its biggest slump so far this year (-5.2 percent), amid a supply surge after volume limits for imported rice were removed with the Rice Tariffication Law that was enacted last February. Prices also fell for corn (-3.7 percent), sugar, jam, honey (-2.9 percent), and vegetables (-1.4 percent). Conversely, cost rose further for food products, N.E.C (6.6 percent); meat (3.5 percent); other cereals, flours, cereal preparation, bread, pasta and other bakery products (3.2 percent); fish (2.8 percent); meat (2.5 percent); and oils & fats (1.8 percent).
Also, inflation eased for housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels (1.8 percent vs 2.2 percent); health (3.1 percent vs 3.2 percent); recreation and culture (1.8 percent vs 3.2 percent), and restaurant and miscellaneous goods and services (3.2 percent vs 3.3 percent). In addition, transport prices fell (-0.2 percent vs 0.7 percent).
Meanwhile, prices rose faster for both alcoholic beverages and tobacco (10.1 percent vs 8.8 percent) and education (4.6 percent vs 4.2 percent). At the same time, inflation was steady for communication (at 0.3 percent) and furnishing, household equipment and routine maintenance (at 2.9 percent).
On a monthly basis, consumer prices rose by 0.2 percent in August, easing from a 0.3 percent gain in July. Prices declined for housing & utilities (-0.3 percent) and transport (-0.1 percent). On the other hand, prices increased for food & non-alcoholic beverages (1.5 percent); health (0.2 percent); education (0.4 percent); clothing & footwear (0.3 percent) and recreation & culture (0.2 percent).