South Korea January Inflation Rate Lowest since 2016


South Korea's annual inflation rate fell to 0.8 percent in January of 2019 from 1.3 percent in the previous month and below market expectations of 1.3 percent. It was the lowest inflation rate since August 2016, as cost slowed for food and housing & utilities, while cost of transport declined at a faster rate.

Year-on-year, prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages increased by 2.6 percent, easing from a 4.2 percent rise in December 2018 and pointing the lowest food inflation in six months. Also, cost advanced at a softer rate for housing and utilities (0.9 percent vs 1.3 percent); restaurant and hotels (3 percent vs 3.1 percent); and clothing and footwear (0.4 percent vs 0.5 percent). In addition, cost fell further for transport (-3.8 percent vs -0.9 percent); and health (-0.5 percent vs - 0.4 percent). In contrast, inflation was steady for alcoholic beverages and tobacco (at 0.1 percent, the same as December), while prices went up faster for education (1.6 percent vs 1.5 percent); recreation and culture (1.1 percent vs 0.8 percent); miscellaneous goods and services (1.6 percent vs 0.9 percent); and furnishing, household equipment & routine maintenance (2.6 percent vs 2 percent). Additionally, cost of communication declined less (-1.5 percent vs -1.9 percent). 

Core CPI, which excludes oil and agricultural products, increased by 1 percent year-on-year in January 2019, after a 1.1 percent rise in December 2018.

On a monthly basis, consumer prices declined unexpectedly by 0.1 percent, following a 0.3 percent fall in a month earlier, and missing market consensus of a 0.4 percent increase.

South Korea January Inflation Rate Lowest since 2016


Statistics Korea l Rida Husna | rida@tradingeconomics.com
2/1/2019 10:02:54 AM