The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) released the Inflation report for December 2016 on Thursday. The PSA said that inflation rate for December was at 2.6 percent, which was higher than the 1.5 percent inflation rate of December 2015. 

Here are three fast facts on the inflation rate in December 2016.

 

1. The December inflation rate report summed up to the year-on-year headline inflation for 2016 averaged 1.8 percent. 

The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) said that this was lower than the projected target range of 3.0 percent ± 1.0 percentage point for the year. The central bank added that it will continue to monitor domestic and global factors to see how these would impact domestic inflation and output conditions. The BSP h as an important role to ensure that the monetary policy stance remains consistent with price and financial stability.

2. BSP said that the inflation prints were expected given the uptick in consumption during the holidays in December. 

“The inflation prints are expected, and in line with our assessment that inflation would be inching up toward the government’s target over the balance of the policy horizon,” The Philippine Daily Inquirer reported BSP Governor Amando M. Tetangco, as saying. 

3. Economic Planning Secretary Ernesto M. Pernia added that there was also an increase in the retail prices of food, particularly meat, fish, and vegetables due to weather-related production disruptions. 

In 2016, typhoons “Karen,” “Lawin” and “Nina” damaged the farms that grow rice, which led to the uptick in prices of rice and also becoming one of the major contributors to the inflation rate. 

“The volatility in rice prices could affect the overall welfare of the Filipino families, particularly the poor who spend around 20 percent of their incomes on rice,” Pernia said in a statement. He added that the government must promote more resilient practices for rice production to minimize the impacts of climate-related shocks.

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