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Annual inflation in Latvia reached 2.2% this year

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Compared to March 2017, the average level of consumer prices rose by 2.2 % in March 2018. Prices of goods grew by 1.6 % and prices of services by 3.7 %. Price changes in a longer period of time are rather significant, and in March 2018 they were 5.3 % higher than in 2015 on average.

Prices of goods increased by 4.3 %, whereas prices of services rose by 7.9 %.
 

Compared to March 2017, the average level of consumer prices was mainly influenced by the rise in prices of goods and services related to housing, goods and services related to transport, miscellaneous goods and services group, alcoholic beverages and tobacco products, as well as food and non-alcoholic beverages in March 2018, according to data compiled by the Central Statistical Bureau of Latvia.
 

Also last year food and non-alcoholic beverages group and goods and services related to transport had significant impact on annual inflation.
 

The greatest upward impact on the price changes during the year in food and non-alcoholic beverages group was exerted by the prices of milk (7.3 %), butter (39.5 %), sour cream (11.7 %), cheese and curd (2.6 %), kefir (8.9 %), yoghurt (3.1 %), cream (11.3 %). Increase was also observed in prices of pork (9.6 %), fresh fruit (7.8 %), eggs (17.6 %), bread (4.1 %), dried, salted or smoked meat (2.0 %), bakery products (3.2 %), ice cream (8.6 %), fruit and vegetable juices (7.4 %). Reduction, in turn, was registered in prices of fresh vegetables (19.6 %), sugar (32.2 %), coffee (9.9 %).
 

Within the group of alcoholic beverages and tobacco products, the average level of prices went up by 4.2 %. Prices of alcoholic beverages rose by 5.1 %, of which prices of spirits, beer and wine increased. Prices of tobacco products increased on average by 2.5 %.
 

Prices of goods and services related to housing grew by 2.9 %. Rise was recorded in prices of solid fuels, maintenance charges in multi-occupied buildings, prices of services for the maintenance and repair of the dwelling, refuse collection, rentals for housing.
 

Within the group of goods and services related to transport, increase of 5.4 % was observed in prices of fuels for transport, of which prices of diesel increased by 5.8 %, of petrol by 5.6 %, and of auto gas by 0.6 %. Compared to March 2017, growth was also recorded in prices of maintenance and repair of personal transport equipment. In its turn, prices of passenger transport by air fell.
 

Within the group of miscellaneous goods and services, the average level of prices grew by 6.8 %, which was mostly due to the rise in prices of motor vehicle insurance. Increase was also recorded in prices of hairdressing salons and personal grooming establishment services, as well as financial services.
 

Among other commodity groups, the most significant growth was recorded in prices of catering services, dental services, pharmaceutical products and telecommunication services. Decline, in turn, was registered in prices of clothing, household cleaning and maintenance products.
 

In March, the greatest pressure on the consumer price changes was put by the growth in prices of clothing and footwear, alcoholic beverages and tobacco products, goods and services related to recreation and culture, goods and services related to transport, as well as drop in prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages.
 

As a result, compared to February 2018, the average level of consumer prices rose by 1.2 % in March 2018. Prices for goods increased by 1.5 % and prices of services by 0.7 %.
 

Over the month, prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages dropped by 0.4 %. Coffee (5.8 %) had the most significant downward impact on the average price level within the group. Decrease was recorded in prices of fresh vegetables (3.7 %), milk (3.2 %), sugar (5.2 %), eggs (1.7 %), olive oil (6.3 %), pork (1.0 %). As sales campaigns ended, prices of cheese increased (4.6 %). Rise of 2.3 % was recorded in prices of fresh fruit, mainly of bananas and oranges. Increase was recorded in prices of fresh or chilled fish (3.7 %).
 

The average level of prices of alcoholic beverages and tobacco products went up by 5.1 %. Prices of alcoholic beverages grew by 8.1 %, which was mainly influenced by rise of the excise duty on alcohol as of 1 March 2018. Upturn was observed in prices of spirits (of 8.0 %), beer – of 11.8 % and wine – of 3.1 %. The average level of tobacco product prices went up by 0.1 %.
 

Growth in prices of clothing and footwear typical for March was affected by the fact that goods of the new season entered the market. Prices of garments increased by 8.2 %, whereas footwear prices rose by 15.3 %.
 

Prices of goods and services related to transport increased by 0.6 %, which was mainly affected by the rise in prices of passenger transport by air, spare parts and accessories for personal transport, passenger transport by sea. In its turn, prices of fuels for transport fell by 0.1 %.
 

Within the recreation and culture group, the average level of prices grew by 1.3 %, which under the influence of seasonal factors was mainly affected by the 9.9 % rise in prices of package holidays. Increase was observed in prices of flowers (5.7 %). In turn, due to sales campaigns prices of pet food reduced.
 

The most notable rise among other consumption groups was recorded in the prices of solid fuels and catering services.

BNN

10-04-2018
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