Panama: Inflation rises slightly in March
April 13, 2018
Consumer prices rose 0.10% month-on-month in March, coming in slightly below the 0.30% increase observed in February. According to the National Comptroller’s Office (Contraloría General de la República), March’s print reflected higher prices in 7 of the 12 components of the index. Food and non-alcoholic beverages; and clothing and footwear were among the components that increased the most, while transportation was the only component that recorded a drop.
Inflation came in at 0.6% in March, above the 0.4% figure recorded in February. Given Panama’s dollarized economy, authorities lack the freedom to use monetary policy or exchange rate adjustments to influence inflation. Meanwhile, annual average inflation inched down from 0.7% in February to 0.6% in March.
Panama Inflation Forecast
FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect inflation to end 2018 at 1.7%, which is down 0.3 percentage points from last month’s projection. For 2019, panelists project inflation of 2.4%.