Kazakhstan Inflation


Inflation jumps in September due to tenge devaluation

Consumer prices in Kazakhstan in September jumped 1.0% over the previous month, which came in well above the 0.3% rise increase observed in August. According to the national statistics office, September’s result reflected higher prices for all categories in the basket, in particular for fresh food.

Consumer prices are beginning to feel the impact of the devaluation of the tenge, as the National Bank of Kazakhstan decided, on 20 August, to abandon the official exchange rate corridor and instead allow the Kazakh currency to float freely. The NBK abandoned the currency band and switched to a free-floating exchange rate regime in order to pursue an inflation-targeting monetary policy

As a result of the monthly increase, inflation jumped from 3.8% in August—the lowest level in 16 years—to 4.4% in September. Under the new regime, the Central bank established an inflation target corridor of between 6.0% and 8.0% for the medium term.

Inflation is likely to continue rising in the coming months, mainly due higher prices from imported goods as a result of the devaluation of the national currency. However, as domestic demand is expected to weaken going forward, this should dampen inflationary pressures and bring inflation down the Central bank’s target sooner than later.

FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists see that inflation will rise in the coming months. Analysts see inflation at 4.9% at the end of 2015. This month’s forecast is down 1.0 percentage points over the previous month’s consensus. For 2016, the panel expects inflation to end the year at 6.2%.

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Kazakhstan Inflation Chart

Kazakhstan Inflation September 2015

Note: Month-on-month changes and annual variation of consumer price index in %.
Source: Republic of Kazakhstan Agency of Statistics.

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