Nigeria: Inflation accelerates to fresh multi-year high in March
Inflation rose to 22.0% in March, up from February’s 21.9%, moving further above the upper bound of the Central Bank’s 6.0–9.0% target band. March’s result represented the highest inflation rate since September 2005 and surprised markets on the upside once again. Looking at the details of the release, March’s acceleration was driven by stronger price increases for food and housing and utilities. March’s result likely means the Central Bank of Nigeria will extend the tightening cycle at its next meeting in May.
Consequently, the trend pointed up, with annual average inflation rising to 20.4% in March, up from February’s 19.9%. Similarly, core inflation came in at 19.9% in March, up from the prior month’s 18.8%.
Lastly, consumer prices rose 1.86% in March, a stronger increase than the previous month’s 1.71%.