Slovenia: Inflation rises in March
March 31, 2011
In March, consumer prices jumped 1.6% over the previous month, after the flat reading registered in February. The price increase reflected rising domestic demand, which had risen 9.1% in 2010, and more optimistic consumers, evidenced in the stronger sentiment index. Clothing and footwear prices soared 11.4% month-on-month, due to the end of season discounts and the arrival of the new spring-summer collection. Prices for housing, water, electricity and fuel, advanced a more moderate 0.6%, while food prices remained flat. As a result of the pronounced monthly price increase, annual headline inflation shot up from 1.4% in February to 1.9% in March. Annual HICP inflation (based on the harmonized consumer price index) also rose from 2.0% in February to 2.4% in March. At the current level, inflation is slightly below the March estimate of 2.6% for the entire Euro area. Meanwhile, the Central Bank raised its 2011 annual inflation forecast from 2.2% to 3.0%, due to higher commodity and food prices.