The CPI climbed to 1.3% in March, its highest rise in almost two years, due to electricity and gasoline. Such a high CPI rate has not been reached since April 2019, when it stood at 1.5%.
The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 1% in March compared to the previous month and placed its interannual rate at 1.3%, almost 1.5 points above that of February (0.0%), according to the data published this Wednesday by the National Institute of Statistics (INE), which confirms the advanced data at the end of last month .
With this rebound, with which the annual CPI chains its third consecutive positive rate , inflation climbs to levels unknown for almost two years . In fact, such a high CPI rate had not been reached since April 2019, when it stood at 1.5%.
Likewise, the year-on-year rate of inflation did not register such a massive rise ( of 1.3 points) since the end of 2016, when it went from 1.6% in December of that year to 3% in January 2017.
The stability of telephony
The sharp increase in prices in March has been mainly contributed by the rise in prices of electricity, diesel for heating and fuels and lubricants for personal transport, in contrast to the drop in prices experienced in March 2020.
In contrast, the INE highlights the stability of prices in telephony and fax services registered in March, which caused the telecommunications group to reduce its interannual rate by almost 1.5 points, to -4.9%.
The interannual rate for food and non-alcoholic beverages also fell, two tenths, to 1.4%, due to the cheaper fish and shellfish .
In monthly rate (March over February), the CPI shot up 1%, its biggest monthly increase since October 2019, driven by the rise in electricity, fuel, clothing and footwear prices due to the start of the spring season -summer.
Food and non-alcoholic beverages
Core inflation (excluding non-processed food and energy products) stood at 0.3% in March, the same rate as in February and one point below the general rate.
In the third month of 2021, the Harmonized Consumer Price Index (HICP) placed its interannual rate at 1.2%, almost 1.5 points more than the previous month. In monthly rate, the IPCA rose 1.9%.
Since last January, the CPI includes the new weights that the INE has assigned to the shopping basket to adapt this indicator this year to the new consumption habits derived from the pandemic.
Thus, the group that has gained the most weight in the shopping basket is that of food and non-alcoholic beverages. On the other hand, clothing and footwear, transportation, leisure and culture, and hotels, cafes and restaurants, among others, lose weight.