South Africa Inflation March 2018

South Africa

South Africa: Inflation declines in March to multi-year low

April 19, 2018

Consumer prices rose 0.4% in March over the previous month, coming in below the 0.8% month-on-month increase observed in February. March’s print was driven by higher prices for education, alcoholic beverages and tobacco, and housing and utilities.

Inflation declined from 4.0% in February to 3.8% in March, coming in below market analysts’ expectations of 4.1% and the lowest print since February 2011. Inflation currently lies within the Central Bank’s target range of 3.0%–6.0%, where it has been since April 2017. Meanwhile, annual average inflation declined from 4.9% in February to 4.7% in March.

Core consumer prices—which exclude food, non-alcoholic beverages, energy and gasoline prices—rose 0.7% month-on-month in March, below February’s 1.1% increase. Core inflation came in at 4.1% in March, matching the print observed in February.

FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect inflation to average 5.1% in 2018, which is unchanged from last month’s forecast. In 2019, the panel sees average inflation edging up to 5.3%.

Author: Jean-Philippe Pourcelot, Economist

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South Africa Inflation Chart

South Africa Inflation March 2018

Note: Annual and monthly variation of consumer prices index in %.
Source: Statistics South Africa and FocusEconomics calculations.

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