South Africa Inflation January 2017

South Africa

South Africa: Inflation moderates in January

February 15, 2017

In January, consumer prices in South Africa increased 0.60% from the previous month, which was up from the 0.40% increase in December. The monthly increase reflected higher prices for food and non-alcoholic beverages as well as for transport.

Inflation moderated from a 10-month high of 6.8% in December to 6.6% in January. Despite the moderation, inflation remains above the upper threshold of the Central Bank’s target range of 3.0%–6.0%. Annual average inflation edged up from 6.3% in October to 6.4% in January.

On 27 January, Statistics South Africa announced the reweighting and restructuring of the consumer price index, four years after the last revision. The main change in the new index, based on the 2014/15 household survey, is a higher weighting for food and non-alcoholic beverages, and a lower weighting for transport, which reflects upward movements in food costs alongside cheaper fuel. The other price categories remained broadly unchanged. The new index applies to the January result, although previous inflation results will not be affected by the revision.

The Central Bank revised its inflation forecast for this year and expects it to average 6.2% in 2017 (previous estimate: 5.8%). For 2018, the Bank left its forecast unchanged and see it averaging 5.5%. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect inflation to average 5.9% in 2017, which is unchanged from last month’s forecast. In 2018, the panel sees average inflation of 5.7%.

Author:, Senior Economist

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South Africa Inflation Chart

South Africa Inflation January 2017

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

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