Bangko Sentral projects July 2018 inflation to jump as high as 5.8%

MANILA, Philippines – Inflation may have accelerated further to as high as 5.8% in July, the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) Department of Economic Research said on Tuesday, July 31.

BSP economists projected July inflation to fall within the range of 5.1% to 5.8% due to increases in utilities. (READ: Who's to blame for soaring inflation? 'All of them' in gov't, says economist)

"The increases in electricity rates in Meralco-serviced areas, water rate adjustments in Maynilad and Manila Water-serviced areas... could lead to upward price pressures during the month," the BSP said.

Economists of the central bank also said the jeepney fare hike, the scheduled increase in tobacco excise tax, and higher prices of rice and other agricultural commodities may have driven up inflation during the month.

"The BSP will continue to keep a watchful eye on the risks to the inflation outlook and will take necessary action to help ensure that inflation expectations remain firmly anchored to the target," the BSP added.

Inflation in June breached 5.2%, a 5-year high using base year 2012. Using base year 2006, inflation in June was at a 9-year high of 5.7%.

The government maintained the inflation target range at 2% to 4% for 2018. The average inflation for this year, so far, is at 4.3%.

Economic managers projected prices to go down in 2019 and fall within target. They expect that global oil prices would stabilize and local measures like rice tariffication would tame inflation. – Rappler.com

Ralf Rivas

A sociologist by heart, a journalist by profession. Ralf is Rappler's business reporter, covering macroeconomy, government finance, companies, and agriculture.

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