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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Weekly inflation clocks in at 42.27%

According to the data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) on Friday, weekly inflation spiked at 42.27 % year-on-year owing to the rising prices of edible oil, pulses and vegetables.

Short-term inflation, measured by the Sensitive Price Index (SPI), is expected to increase further due to depreciation, a hike in the general sales tax rate, and higher energy prices. Week-on-week inflation remained at 1.37% for the week ending on March 9, with bananas, chicken, sugar, cooking oil, gas, and cigarettes becoming costlier.

Moreover, the weekly inflation number is the highest since the week ending on Sept 8, 2022, when SPI was 42.7%. It stayed above 40% for the first time since Sept 15 last year at 40.58%.

Read more: Record High Exchange Rate of USD against Pak Rupee

The prices of 29 items from the 51 items in the SPI list have increased, while the prices of 8 items have decreased, and the rates of 14 items remained stable. 

YoY hike

 During the week under review, the prices of onions increased up to 305.23%, eggs to 78.63%, Irri 6/9 rice to almost 78.14%, and broken basmati rice to 77.27%. Likewise, the prices of bananas have increased by 74.01%, bread by 55.36%, pulse moong by 72.54% and tea by 66.31%. 

In contrast, the prices of tomatoes fell by 41.79% and chili powder by 7.42% on a year-on-year basis. 

Read more: Weekly inflation jumps by 2.78%

WoW hike

 On a week-on-week basis, the prices of tomatoes rose by 12.43%, potatoes by 11.37%, onions by 9.26%, and bananas by 5.31%. Similarly, the rates of wheat, rice, and sugar have also been revised. Wheat flour has experienced a price hike of 4%, the price of sugar rose by 5.48% and basmati rice is 1.24% costlier.

However, the prices of chicken, garlic, and pulses saw a decline of 6.73%, 2.07%, and 0.83% respectively. 

Read more: Record-high inflation at 31.6%

The government has been taking strict measures under the International Monetary Fund (IMF) program, which is likely to slow down economic growth and stoke inflation. The increase in the policy rate to 20%, the GST rate to 18% on most items, and 25% on luxury goods will further increase the retail prices of consumer goods.