Inflation drops in January
Inflation, as measured by the year-on-year (YoY) change in the
Colombo Consumers' Price Index (CCPI) (2006-07 = 100), which is computed
by the Department of Census and Statistics, declined further to 4.4
percent in January, for the third consecutive month, from 4.7 percent in
December 2013. Annual average inflation, which followed a declining
trend since June 2013, moderated further to 6.5 percent in January 2014,
from 6.9 percent in December 2013.
The marginal increase in the CCPI by 0.6 percent in January 2014 over
the previous month was mainly due to the price increase in the Non-food
category by 1.7 percent which, however, was partly offset by the decline
in price of Food category by 0.9 percent. Within the Food category,
prices of upcountry vegetables, big onions, red onions, potatoes, limes
and fruits decreased.
In the Non-Food category, price increases were reported in the
sub-categories of Health (8.0 percent), Communication (3.9 percent),
Transport (3.3 percent), Furnishing, Household Equipment and Routine
Household Maintenance (0.7 percent), Miscellaneous Goods and Services
(0.2 percent), Housing, Water, Electricity, Gas and Other Fuels (0.1
percent), and Clothing and Footwear (0.1 percent). Meanwhile, the prices
in the sub categories of Recreation and Culture, and Education remained
unchanged during the month.
Annual average core inflation continuously decelerated to 4.1 percent
in January 2014, for the eighth month in succession, from 4.4 percent in
December 2013, reflecting the demand driven inflation in check.
YoY core inflation increased to 3.5 percent in January 2014 from 2.1
percent in December 2013.