Brazil: Inflation inches up in February
March 8, 2013
In February, consumer prices increased 0.60% over the previous month, which was below the 0.86% rise recorded in January but above market expectations of a 0.49% price rise. The increase was mainly driven by higher prices for food and beverages as well as for education, associated with the beginning of the school year.
Annual headline inflation inched up from 6.2% in January to 6.3% in February, the highest reading observed in 14 months. Nonetheless, inflation remains within the Central Bank's target of 4.5% with a tolerance margin of plus/minus 2.0 percentage points.
The Central Bank expects inflation to moderate further to 4.8% by the end of this year and to rise to 4.9% by the end of 2014, according to its Inflation Report from December 2012. LatinFocus Consensus Forecast participants see IPCA inflation closing 2013 at 5.6%, which is unchanged from last month's forecast. For 2014, the panel sees inflation at 5.5%.