Korea: Inflation moderates to a one-year low in January
February 1, 2019
Consumer prices decreased 0.1% month-on-month in January, less than the 0.3% drop in December. In January, lower prices came on the back of cheaper housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels; transport; and food and non-alcoholic beverages. Higher prices for recreation and culture, health, education, and restaurants and hotels moderated the price fall, however. All told, this was only the second time on record since 1965 that prices have fallen in January, as they normally rise on the back of public and private service price rises at the start of the year.
Inflation moderated to 0.8% in January to 1.3% in December, falling further below the Bank of Korea’s 2.0% target and hitting a one-year low. Core inflation, which excludes fresh food and energy prices, slowed to 1.0% in January from 1.1% in December. Annual average inflation, meanwhile, was unchanged at 1.5% in January.
Author: Edward Gardner, Economist