Mexico: Inflation declines to lowest level since March 2022 in February
Inflation fell to 7.6% in February from January’s 7.9%, below market expectations but still well above the Central Bank’s 2.0%–4.0% target range. February’s reading represented the lowest inflation rate since March 2022. The result was largely driven by a more moderate rise in prices for food, beverages and tobacco. In addition, price pressures for housing rose at a softer rate.
Annual average inflation remained at January’s 8.0% in February. Meanwhile, core inflation fell to 8.3% in February, from the previous month’s 8.5%.
Lastly, consumer prices rose 0.56% in February over the previous month, moderating from the 0.68% increase seen in January.
The softer-than-expected February inflation data could support more mild monetary easing at Banxico’s 30 March meeting, as Itaú Unibanco’s Julio Ruiz said:
“Recent inflation evolution is supportive of the latest statement’s monetary forward guidance of slowing down the pace of rate hikes to 25-bp (from 50-bp) in the end of March meeting, reaching a level of 11.25%.”