CPI rebounds for first time in months

The consumer price index (CPI) in September has bounced back with an increase of 0.54 percent from the previous month, ending the period of decline that started this May.

The consumer price index (CPI) in September has bounced back with an increase of 0.54 per cent from the previous month, ending the period of decline that started this May. (Photo: VNA/VNS)

In the first nine months of this year, the CPI increased 2.07 percent compared to the same period last year, the General Statistics Office said at a press conference in Hà Nội on Saturday.

Explaining the rebound, Đỗ Thị Ngọc, Deputy Director of the GSO’s Price Statistics Department, said an upturn occurred in 10 out of 11 major goods and service groups, with the biggest increase reported in education at 7.19 percent—as 53 centrally-run cities and provinces raised school fees in accordance with a Governmental decree.

Transport services prices followed with a 0.55 percent increase, due to several petrol price hikes.

The only decrease was in the price of telecommunications, at a drop of  0.07 percent.

Ngọc said the CPI also rose 3.14 percent from last December. With this figure in mind, it seems the Government’s target of 5 percent CPI growth for the year is a feasible one.

However, many factors could pressure the CPI in the remaining months of this year, including the prices of health services, year-end expenditures, gas and oil.

She said relevant Government ministries and agencies should continue watch inflation closely. In addition, the State should consider timing its price adjustments for some essential goods to prevent psychological pressure on the CPI.

According to the GSO, September core inflation (excluding food and fresh foodstuff, energy products and State-controlled commodities such as healthcare and education services) increased a marginal 0.07 percent from the previous month and 1.85 percent from one year ago. The nine-month core inflation climbed 1.81 percent against the same period last year.

October’s CPI is forecasted to increase due to hikes in health services fees and gas and oil prices caused by looming hikes in the world’s gasoline and oil prices.

Ngô Trí Long, former director of the Price Management Institute under the Ministry of Finance, forecasted that the whole year’s CPI increase could reach 4.2 percent. However, he said the Government should be cautious as many internal and external factors could cause the real inflation exceed the target.

From now to the end of the year, unforeseen factors like natural disasters, harvest losses and basic salary increases could also pressure the CPI.

In addition, the money supply and the excitement of the real estate market must be strictly controlled, Long stressed.

On the same day, the HCM City’s Statistics Office reported that the city’s CPI in September increased 0.43 percent from the previous month, and 2.71 percent from the same month last year.

A price hike was seen in seven out of 11 major goods and services groups, with the highest rise spotted in education at 4.06 percent due increasing demands for learning equipment for the new school year.

Some commodities in the city also experienced very slight drops in their prices, including culture and entertainment with 0.3 percent, telecommunication 0.2 percent, other goods and services 0.02 percent, and pharmaceutical and health services 0.01 percent.  

Source: VNS

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