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Malaysia Inflation March 2024

Malaysia: Inflation remains steady in March

Inflation came in at 1.8% in March, matching February’s reading and surprising markets on the downside. The stable figure was largely driven by softer growth in prices for food and non-alcoholic beverages offsetting stronger price pressures for housing and utiltiies. Meanwhile, price rises for transport were broadly stable.

The trend pointed down slightly, with annual average inflation coming in at 2.0% in March (February: 2.1%).

Lastly, consumer prices increased a seasonally adjusted 0.08% in March over the previous month, slowing down from the 0.53% rise logged in February.

United Overseas Bank analysts Julia Goh and Loke Siew Ting said:

“March’s inflation outturn did not sway our view that headline inflation will trend up gradually towards year end. We project it to average 2.6% for the entire year of 2024 (BNM est: 2.0%-3.5%, 2023: 2.5%), barring the effects of subsidy rationalization measures particularly the removal of fuel subsidies due to a lack of details on the timing, quantum and method of implementation. Meanwhile, the government continues to implement selective measures in recent months to help mitigate the impact of elevated price pressures and supply shortage.”

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