The headline inflation at the national level further accelerated by 3.3 percent in February 2017. It went up by 2.7 percent in the previous month and 0.9 percent in February 2016. The growth was primarily brought about by higher annual rate posted in the heavily-weighted food and non-alcoholic beverages index as it advanced by 4.1 percent during the month. Faster annual increments were also observed in the indices of the following commodity groups:
The rest of the commodity groups either had slower annual increases or retained their previous month’s rates. (Tables 6 and 8)
Excluding selected food and energy items, core inflation likewise picked up by 2.7 percent in February 2017. In the previous month, core inflation was registered at 2.5 percent and in February 2016, 1.5 percent. (Table 15)
Inflation of the food alone index climbed by 4.3 percent in February 2017. It was pegged at 3.6 percent in the previous month and 1.5 percent in the same period a year ago. (Table 13)
A double-digit annual mark-up was noted in the index of vegetables at 12.8 percent in February 2017. Moreover, all other food groups recorded higher annual growths except corn; fruits; and sugar, jam, honey, chocolate and confectionery. (Table 10)
National Capital Region (NCR)
Similarly, inflation in NCR went up by 3.6 percent in February 2017. Inflation in the previous month was posted at 3.0 percent and in February 2016, 0.1 percent. The annual growth in food and non-alcoholic beverages index soared by 6.6 percent and alcoholic beverages and tobacco index, 6.9 percent. Moreover, higher annual upticks were also registered in the indices of the following commodity groups:
Slower annual hikes were, however, noted in the indices of transport at 3.1 percent; recreation and culture, 3.6 percent; and restaurant and miscellaneous goods and services, 1.5 percent. Annual movement in the education index remained at 2.6 percent. (Tables 6 and 8)
Areas Outside NCR (AONCR)
Following the same trend, inflation in AONCR climbed by 3.2 percent in February 2017. In January 2017, it picked up by 2.7 percent and in February 2016, 1.2 percent. The annual mark-up in food and non-alcoholic beverages index was higher at 3.7 percent. In addition, higher annual rates were also registered in the indices of housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels at 3.3 percent and transport, 2.8 percent. Moreover, the annual change of communication index also inched up by 0.1 percent from zero growth. Meanwhile, the rest of the commodity groups retained their previous month’s rate with the index of restaurants and miscellaneous goods and sevices registering slower annual growth of 2.4 percent. (Tables 6 and 8)
Except Ilocos Region and MIMAROPA, higher annual increases were recorded in all regions during the period. The highest inflation of 4.2 percent was seen in Cagayan Valley while the lowest at 1.7 percent was noticed in Ilocos Region. (Table 8)
The country’s consumer prices gained by 0.3 percent for three consecutive months now. Higher growths were observed in the indices of alcoholic beverages and tobacco at 1.0 percent and housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels, 1.2 percent. In addition, the communication index rose by 0.1 percent from zero growth. The other commodity groups either had slower increments or retained their previous month’s rate except for the index of transport which further dropped by 0.5 percent.
Prices of LPG generally moved upward nationwide. Increased charges in the electricity rates and higher prices in kerosene, cigarettes and alcoholic beverages in NCR and many provinces were also noted in February 2017.
On the other hand, most of the regions registered downward adjustments in air and ship fares during the month.
Note: CPIs and inflation rates by province and selected city are also available upon request at Philippine Statistics Authority, Economic Sector Statistics Service, Price Statistics Division (Telephone Number: 376-19-59).
FOR THE NATIONAL STATISTICIAN:
(Sgd) JOSIE B. PEREZ