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Inflation in Pakistan picks up to 4.2pc


02/06/18   ISLAMABAD DawnNews: Inflation edged up to 4.2 per cent in May from 3.7pc in the preceding month owing to an increase in price of non-perishable products and energy costs.
The inflation, measured through the Consumer Price Index (CPI), went up for the second consecutive month in May after witnessing a declining trend in the past three months, according to data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics on Friday.
On monthly basis, the CPI-based inflation reached a peak of 4.6pc in December 2017.
The CPI tracks the prices of around 480 commodities every month in urban centres across the country.
The average inflation in the first 11 months (July-May) of 2017-18 was 3.81pc as compared to 4.18pc in the corresponding period last year. However, it remains below the projected target of 6pc for FY18.
Food inflation went slightly up by 1pc both on annual and monthly basis. This increase was mainly contributed by prices of perishable food items which were higher by 4.98pc while those of non-perishable products were up 0.45pc during the month.
Food items whose prices increased the most in May were potatoes, growing by 17.6pc, chicken 7.25pc, fresh fruits 6pc, tomatoes 3.07pc, fresh vegetables 2.62pc, dry fruits 1.83pc, besan 1.71pc, gur 1.34pc, spices 1.3pc, honey 1.25pc, sweat meat 1.22pc, eggs 1.03pc, cereals 0.95pc and meat 0.84pc.
In the same category, betel leaves and nuts dipped 16.5pc month-on-month, wheat 3.3pc, onion 2.57pc, wheat flour 1.89pc, pulse mash 1.65pc, pulse gram 1.32pc, gram whole 1.11pc, pulse moong 0.42pc, wheat product 0.31pc and sugar 0.13pc.
Non-food inflation grew by 6.4pc year-on-year, and 0.2pc on a monthly basis. The increase in the non-food inflation is mainly due to an increase in global crude oil prices in the past few months whose impact was passed on to the consumers. It will further go up when the oil prices for June are further passed on to the end consumers.
Core inflation, measured by excluding volatile food and energy prices, was recorded at 7pc year-on-year, and 0.2pc on a month-on-month basis. It has been steadily rising for the past couple of months.
Education and health indices rose 13.1pc and 5.22pc respectively on a yearly while a decline of 17.76pc was witnessed in the index of alcoholic beverages and tobacco. Clothing and footwear rose by 6.7pc, while that of housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels by 5.53pc.

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