QCOSTARICA – Inflation, measured by the consumer price index (CPI), reached an increase of 3.35% in November compared to the same month of the previous year, the highest since February 2015. If only the interannual variation of November of each year is considered , is the highest in the last seven years.
As reported by the Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Censos (INEC) – National Institute of Statistics and Censuses, this December 7, the monthly variation was 0.82% and the accumulated in the first 11 months of the year reached 2.80%.
The increases in food and non-alcoholic beverages and transportation contributed the most to the monthly variation of the indicator.
The goods and services that showed the greatest positive effect on the monthly variation of the index (due to its increase and importance in the household budget) were: airfare, eggs, and liquefied gas. On the other hand, telecommunications services, vainica (green beans) and metal pot were among the items with the greatest negative effect.
The increase in the price indicator implies a reduction in the purchasing power of households if income does not increase in the same proportion, but in addition, this indicator is used as a reference to adjust public rates, minimum wages, pensions, rental housing contracts and fuel taxes.
Furthermore, it may lead the Central Bank to reverse the expansionary monetary policy that it has applied so far, which would imply an increase in interest rates.
In the conference to present the Monetary Policy Report, on November 1, the president of the Central Bank, Rodrigo Cubero, indicated: “The Central Bank of Costa Rica will continue with an expansive monetary policy stance, in support of to economic recovery, as long as macroeconomic conditions and forecasting models indicate that, in the next 24 months, inflation would not exceed the 3% goal in a sustained manner”.
On December 1 Álvaro Pereira, director of the Department of Economics of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), explained, at the conference on the Latin American countries that belong to the organization, that there are three risks for the region: acceleration of inflation, more delays in the supply of products and a slowdown in some large countries such as China, which are important for this area.