September inflation hits four-year high of 6.9% — PSA

The Philippines’ inflation rate quickened to 6.9 percent in September from 6.3 percent in August, says the state statistics agency.

The country’s inflation rate in September 2022 was at 6.9 percent — a four-year high since October 2018 — amid the rising costs of key food items and energy according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

In a report published on October 5, PSA said inflation figures for September rose from 6.3 percent recorded in August. It brought the year-to-date inflation to 5.1 percent, way above the central bank’s 2 to 4 percent target band.

PSA said the higher inflation rate was brought by a higher annual growth rate in the prices for food and non-alcoholic beverages which increased to 7.4 percent in September from 6.3 percent in August 2022.

This is followed by housing, water, electricity, gas, and other fuels basket which ballooned to 7.3 percent from August’s 6.4 percent according to PSA.

PSA also attributed the acceleration to the increasing cost of the following commodities and services:

  • Alcoholic beverages and tobacco, 9.8 percent;
  • Clothing and footwear, 2.9 percent;
  • Furnishings, household equipment, and routine household maintenance, 3.5 percent;
  • Information and communication, 0.5 percent;
  • Recreation, sport, and culture, 2.7 percent;
  • Restaurants and accommodation services, 4.6 percent; and
  • Personal care, and miscellaneous goods and services, 3.4 percent.

However, core inflation, which excludes food and energy items given their price volatility, inched down to 4.5 percent in September compared to 4.6 percent the month prior.

Meanwhile, the Philippine peso fell to another record low of P59 to $1 last Monday, October 3 as the US Federal Reserve keeps interest rates high to tame inflation.

Economists said ordinary Filipinos would feel the brunt of a higher inflation rate and a weaker peso as it is tantamount to less purchasing power of consumers’ money.

Thumbnail photo by Frank Lloyd de la Cruz on Unsplash

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