12 Jan 2024 19:08

Russia had 0.73% inflation in Dec, 7.42% in 2023 - Rosstat

MOSCOW. Jan 12 (Interfax) - Inflation in Russia slowed to 0.73% in December 2023 from 1.11% in November, the Russian State Statistics Service (Rosstat) said Friday.

Consumer prices rose 0.83% in October, 0.87% in September, 0.28% in August, 0.63% in July, 0.37% in June, 0.31% in May, 0.38% in April, 0.37% in March, 0.46% in February and 0.84% in January.

Inflation in December 2023 was lower than the 0.8% that analysts predicted in a consensus forecast for Interfax at the end of the month.

Overall inflation for 2023, according to Rosstat data, was 7.42%, compared with 11.94% in 2022, 8.39% in 2021, 4.9% in 2020 and 3.0% in 2019.

Price growth in 2023 was slightly lower than the latest official forecasts and analysts' expectations. The Central Bank forecast for 2023 stood at 7.0-7.5%, leaning towards the upper bound, while the latest Economic Development Ministry forecast was 7.5%. The consensus forecast of economists polled by Interfax in late December was 7.5% for 2023 inflation.

Food prices rose 1.49% in December and 8.16% in 20232, compared with 10.29% growth in 2022.

Fruit and vegetables went up 6.83% in December and 24.19% in 2023 after falling 1.97% in 2022.

Egg prices rose 61.35% in 2023, including 18.17% in December. Chilled and frozen chicken went up 27.77% in 2023, granulated sugar 10.76% and frozen fish 9.18%.

Pasta fell 3.78%, cereals and legumes 2.42% and sunflower oil 1.41% in 2023.

Nonfood prices rose 0.42% in December and 5.96% in 2023, compared with 12.7% growth in 2022. The biggest increases in this category in 2022 were for medicines - 7.90%, gasoline - 7.23% and tobacco products - 7.03%, while televisions and radios fell 6.22% in 2023.

Service charges went up 0.10% in December and rose 8.33% in 2023, compared with 13.19% growth in 2022. The biggest increases in the year were for holidays abroad, up 24.77% following 70.68% growth in 2022, and passenger transport fares - 15.69%.

Core or underlying inflation was 100.41% in December and 106.83% in 2023, up from 114.31% in 2022.

As reported, the board of directors of the Central Bank of Russia (CBR) at a meeting on December 15 decided to hike the key rate by 100 basis points to 16.0% per annum.

The CBR has also retained its neutral signal about the direction of monetary policy in its commentary to the decision.

"In its further key rate decision-making, the Bank of Russia will take into account actual and expected inflation dynamics relative to the target and economic developments over the forecast horizon, as well as risks posed by domestic and external conditions and the reaction of financial markets," it said, repeating the wording it used in the commentary to its October decision to put the rate up as much as 200 bps.