Summary Inflation Report Consumer Price Index (1994=100) : March 2003
Release Date: 04 April 2003
MARCH AND FEBRUARY 2003
|Inflation Rates, Philippines, All Items|
Year-on-year inflation decelerated to 2.9 percent in March from 3.1 percent in February due to the slowdown in the inflation rate of food, beverages and tobacco (FBT). Inflation a year ago was 3.6 percent.
Likewise, inflation rate in the National Capital Region (NCR) improved by 0.4 percentage point to 3.1 percent in March from 3.5 percent in February. This was due to the lower inflation rates registered in the indices of FBT and housing and repairs (H&R).
Inflation rate in Areas Outside the National Capital Region (AONCR) was 2.9 percent in March, the same rate posted in February.
Month-on-month inflation slightly slid to 0.1 percent in March from 0.2 percent in February brought about by the decline in the prices of corn, eggs, fish, fruits and vegetables. A slower rate recorded in the index for fuel, light and water (FLW) also contributed to the downward trend.
CONSUMER PRICE INDEX
> By Region, Year-on-Year
The inflation rate in NCR went down by 0.4 percentage point to 3.1 percent in March from 3.5 percent in February.
Inflation in AONCR moved at its February rate of 2.9 percent. Seven regions posted higher inflation rates. The biggest increase at 0.3 percentage point was observed in CAR, Cagayan Valley and Caraga. The highest rate was still noted in Northern Mindanao at 4.8 percent while the lowest was still in Eastern Visayas at 2.0 percent.
> By Commodity Group, Year-on-Year
Inflation rate for FBT slowed to 1.8 percent in March from 2.3 percent in February. Meanwhile, inflation for FLW and services correspondingly picked up to 5.2 percent and 6.7 percent in March from their respectiveFebruary rates of 4.2 percent and 6.4 percent. Inflation for clothing, H&R, and miscellaneous items still remained at 2.0 percent, 2.7 percent and 1.6 percent, respectively.
The inflation rate for food alone slipped to 1.8 percent in March from 2.3 percent in February mainly brought about by the 4.1 percentage points decline in the inflation rate of fruits and vegetables. In addition, negative rates were still recorded in the prices of eggs, -0.1 percent from -0.4 percent and meat, -0.3 percent from -0.8 percent. Slower rates were also seen in the prices of corn, 1.8 percent in March from 3.4 percent in February; fish, 1.0 percent from 1.7 percent; and miscellaneous foods, 2.5 percent from 2.6 percent. Meanwhile, higher rates were observed in the prices of rice, 3.2 percent from 3.1 percent; cereal preparations, 4.1 percent from 4.0 percent; and dairy products, 2.9 percent from 2.6 percent.
In NCR, inflation rates for FBT and H&R correspondingly slowed to 1.5 percent and 1.3 percent in March from their respective last month's rates of 3.2 percent and 1.4 percent. However, inflation for clothing went up to 2.2 percent in March from 2.0 percent in February; FLW, 6.1 percent from 4.6 percent; services, 8.3 percent from 7.7 percent; and miscellaneous items, 1.2 percent from 0.9 percent.
The inflation rate for food alone in NCR improved to 1.5 percent in March from 3.3 percent in February as inflation for fruits and vegetables significantly declined by 16.2 percentage points to 0.4 percent from 16.6 percent. Negative rates were also noted in the prices of corn, -2.1 percent from -7.2 percent; eggs, -3.5 percent from -3.9 percent; fish, -1.0 percent from 0.3 percent; and meat, -1.0 percent from -2.3 percent. In addition, a slower rate was posted in the prices of cereal preparations at 5.4 percent from 5.6 percent while prices of miscellaneous foods still moved at its February rate of 3.1 percent.
In AONCR, the inflation rate for miscellaneous items remained at its February rate of 1.8 percent while inflation for FLW and services correspondingly increased to 4.7 percent and 5.9 percent from their respective February rates of 4.0 percent and 5.8 percent. On the other hand, inflation for FBT decelerated to 1.9 percent from 2.0 percent; clothing, 2.0 percent from 2.1 percent; and H&R, 3.6 percent from 3.7 percent.
Inflation rate for food alone slightly eased to 1.9 percent in March from 2.0 percent in February.
Movements in the prices of fruits and vegetables were registered at -0.3 percent from 0.4 percent in February. In addition, inflation for corn and fish correspondingly moved down to 1.9 percent and 1.5 percent from their respective February rates of 3.6 percent and 2.0 percent.
The price of rice slightly accelerated to 3.3 percent from 3.2 percent as seven regions registered higher rates. The biggest increase at 1.4 percentage points was in Bicol followed by Central Luzon and ARMM at 0.4 percentage point.
Prices of cereal preparations went up to 3.6 percent from 3.4 percent; dairy products, 2.7 percent from 2.3 percent; eggs, 1.0 percent from 0.7 percent; and meat, 0.1 percent from -0.2 percent.
Price movement in miscellaneous foods remained at its February rate of 2.2 percent.
> By Region, Month-on-Month
Prices in NCR slightly picked up to 0.2 percent in March from 0.1 percent in February. Prices of clothing items advanced to 0.4 percent from 0.2 percent; services, 0.7 percent from 0.5 percent; and miscellaneous items, 0.4 percent from zero growth. However, prices of H&R items slid to 0.1 percent from 0.2 percent while prices of FLW items moved at its previous month's rate of 2.1 percent. Prices of FBT items still posted a negative rate of 0.5 percent.
Prices in AONCR registered a 0.1 percent increase in March, slower than 0.3 percent in February. This was mainly brought about by the -0.1 percent drop in the prices of FBT items. Prices of clothing and H&R items also slowed to 0.1 percent from their corresponding February rates of 0.2 percent and 0.3 percent; FLW items, 1.0 percent from 1.1 percent; and services items, 0.3 percent from 0.4 percent. The rate in the previous month was retained in miscellaneous items at 0.2 percent. All the regions recorded lower month-on-month rate during the month as food prices in general declined in many areas. The highest month-on-month rate at 0.4 percent was observed in CAR while Ilocos had the lowest rate at -0.2 percent.
> By Commodity Group, Month-on-Month
A 0.3 percent reduction in the prices of FBT items slightly pushed down the month-on-month inflation rate to 0.1 percent in March from 0.2 percent in February. Prices of FLW items also fell to 1.4 percent from 1.5 percent. On the contrary, prices of services items slightly accelerated to 0.5 percent from 0.4 percent while prices of clothing, and miscellaneous items moved at their February rate of 0.2 percent.
The fruit markets were well supplied by tropical and in-season fruits like mangoes and pineapples during the month. Supplies of vegetables were also abundant in the markets. Thus, the index for fruits and vegetables in the Philippines further went down to -1.8 percent from -0.3 percent and NCR, -4.3 percent from -1.6 percent. The group's index in AONCR also declined to -1.0 percent from 0.2 percent.
The continued peak fishing season of tuna and the good catch of fishermen brought about by the prevalence of good weather conditions cut down prices of fresh fish, shrimps, crabs and shells in the wet markets during the month. This resulted to negative rates posted in the indices of fish in the three areas: Philippines, -0.8 percent in March from -0.4 percent in February; NCR, -1.2 percent from -2.3 percent; and in AONCR, -0.7 percent from zero growth.
Add-ons in the prices of cooking oil, coffee, sugar, powdered tonic drink and selected spices and seasonings were noticed in March. Prices of meals eaten outside the home were also up by 1.1 percent in NCR and 0.1 percent in AONCR. These raised the miscellaneous foods indices in the Philippines and AONCR by 0.1 percent in March, slightly slower than the 0.2 percent increment last month. Meanwhile, movement in the group's index for NCR still remained at 0.2 percent.
The graduation season resulted to higher demand of meat and this raised the index in NCR and AONCR to 0.2 percent in March from -0.1 percent in February. Overall, the index grew to 0.1 percent in March from -0.1 percent in February.
After the manufacturer's implementation of price adjustments in January due to the increases of cost of production, prices of processed milk (condensed, evaporated and powdered milk) and its products such as ice cream and cheese have already stabilized in March. Thus, prices of dairy products in the Philippines, NCR and AONCR improved to 0.4 percent in March from their corresponding last month's rates of 0.9 percent, 0.8 percent and 1.0 percent.
The price of rice in NCR recorded a zero growth in March as supply was sufficient in the area. However, in AONCR, the price of rice was up by 0.1 percent in March, the same rate noted in February. Only five regions registered higher rates as the harvest season have already started in some regions. Overall, the price of rice moved up to 0.1 percent in March from -0.1 percent last month.
The continued price increases in LPG and kerosene in NCR and higher purchased power adjustment (PPA) and currency exchange rate adjustment (CERA) for electricity caused the FLW index in the area to move up by 2.1 percent in March. Likewise, increments in the prices of LPG and kerosene along with higher charges for electricity in many regions were also observed. Thus, the FLW indices in the Philippines and AONCR correspondingly went up to 1.4 percent and 1.0 percent in March, slightly slower than their respective last month's rates of 1.5 percent and 1.1 percent.
The services index in the Philippines grew by 0.5 percent, NCR, 0.7 percent and in AONCR, 0.3 percent in March due to the upward adjustments in the prices of medicines, gasoline, diesel and engine oil.
Higher prices of imported raw materials in the manufacture of GI sheets and the peso depreciation brought up prices of GI sheets in the markets. Add-ons in the prices of plywood, cement and nails and higher rental rates in selected provinces were also noticed during the month. All these factors added up to the 0.2 percent uptick in the H&R index for the Philippines and 0.1 percent for NCR and AONCR.
The 2nd phase survey results from Lanao del Sur was not yet received as of April 3, 2003.
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