Norway: Inflation unchanged in March
April 10, 2018
Consumer prices increased 0.3% month-on-month in March—below market expectations of a 0.5% rise and much less than February’s 0.9% increase. According to Statistics Norway, prices rose primarily because of costlier clothing and footwear. There was also a sizable increase in prices for housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels. On the other hand, prices for food and non-alcoholic beverages decreased compared to the previous month.
Inflation remained steady at 2.2% in March, matching the ten-month high recorded in February. This was below market expectations of 2.4% but above the Central Bank’s new target of 2.0%, which the government set on 2 March (previous target: 2.5%). Annual average inflation slowed to 1.7% in March from February’s 1.8%.
Core consumer prices—which are adjusted for tax changes and exclude energy prices—increased 0.2% month-on-month in March, down from February’s 0.8% rise. Core inflation, meanwhile, decelerated to 1.2% from February’s 1.4%.
Norway Inflation Forecast
The Central Bank projects that inflation will average 2.1% in 2018 and 1.7% in 2019. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect inflation to average 1.8% in 2018, which is unchanged from last month’s estimate. In 2019, they expect inflation to average 1.9%.
Author: Edward Gardner, Economist