Headline inflation slowed down to 3.0 percent year-on-year in April 2019 from 3.3 percent in the previous month. The resulting year-to-date average of 3.6 percent is within the Government’s inflation target range of 3.0 percent ± 1.0 percentage point for the year. Core inflation—which excludes selected volatile food and energy items to measure underlying price pressures—has also decelerated to 3.4 percent in April from 3.5 percent in March. Meanwhile, month-on-month seasonally-adjusted headline inflation rose to 0.2 percent in April 2019 from 0.1 percent in the previous month.
Year-on-year inflation for both food and non-food items decelerated in April 2019. Slower price increases of key food commodities particularly rice, meat, fish, and sugar as well as the continued decline in corn prices on a year-on-year basis contributed to the deceleration in food inflation. Likewise, non-food inflation eased further as higher transport inflation driven by rising international oil prices, was counterbalanced by lower inflation for health, clothing and footwear as well as restaurants and miscellaneous goods and services.
The latest inflation outturn is consistent with the BSP’s expectations that inflation will settle within the Government’s 2-4 percent target range for 2019 and 2020. The BSP will continue to keep a close watch over price developments and will consider all relevant information at its next monetary policy meeting on 9 May 2019 to ensure that the monetary policy stance remains consistent with the BSP’s price stability objective.