The short-term inflation measured by the Sensitive Price Index (SPI) increased to almost 38.42 % year-on-year (YoY) for the week ending on February 16. According to the data shared by SPI, the weekly rise is driven mostly by high food and fuel prices.
The short-term inflation rate was slightly lower in the last week at 34.83% and on a week-on-week basis, SPI increased 2.89% against 0.17%. This is the highest weekly rise since October 27, last year.
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The SPI monitors the prices of 51 essential items based on a survey of 50 markets in 17 cities across the country. The results suggest that the prices of 34 items increased and 5 decreased, while 12 remained unchanged.
Highest Year-on-Year rise
Food items such as onions, chicken, eggs, and rice experienced a major price hike of 433.44%, 101.86%,81.36%, and 74.12% respectively. Similarly, the price of diesel also increased to almost 81.36%. On the other hand tomatoes and chili powder experienced a price reduction of 65.3% and 7.42% respectively. Likewise, the price of electricity for group earnings fell to Rs 17,732 per month at 7.5%.
Highest week-on-week rise
The weekly statistics show a rise in prices of cooking oil at 8.65% per five liters, ghee at 8.02% per kg, and chicken at 7.49%. The SPI weekly review showed a price hike of 6.49% in diesel and 8.82% in petrol. However, the prices of tomatoes, onions, and garlic fell by 14.27%, 13.48%, and 2.1% respectively. The prices of other food items like flour and eggs also fell by 0.1% and 4.2%.
Read more: January CPI spikes to 27.5%
Pakistan has been going through decades-high inflation for the past few months. In January, annual inflation measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) jumped 27.55% the highest increase since May 1975.
Furthermore, inflation has been driven due to the devastating floods last year that destroyed large parts of agricultural land, leading to a shortage of some food items like wheat and rice. Additionally, the import ban and restrictions on getting a letter of credit (LCs) due to declining forex reserves have largely contributed to the economic insecurity in the country.
Moreover, inflation is expected to increase further in the coming months as government seeks to implement the conditions agreed upon with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for a $1.2 billion bailout.