Saudi Arabia: Decline in consumer prices softens in February
March 21, 2017
Consumer prices rose 0.3% in February compared to the previous month, which contrasted January’s 0.2% decrease. February’s monthly increase mainly reflected higher prices for food and beverages, transport and housing, water, electricity and gas.
On an annual basis, consumer prices fell 0.1% in February, less than January’s 0.4% drop. January’s print had represented the first year-on-year decline in prices in over a decade. Meanwhile, annual average inflation fell from 3.1% in January to 2.7% in February, hitting an 11-month low.
A relatively weak economy and a strong U.S. dollar are behind the recent drop in annual consumer prices. However, inflation should return in the coming months on the back of the government initiatives to shore up private activities and planned increases in regulated prices.