Inflation hits 9-month high | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, October 16, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 01:10 AM, October 16, 2019

Inflation hits 9-month high

Inflation edged up five basis points to 5.54 percent in September, the highest in nine months, driven mainly by spiralling prices of food and non-food items. 

The last month’s rate was higher than 5.49 percent recorded in August this year and 5.43 percent in September last year, according to data from state-run Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS). 

Food and non-food inflation drove up the overall inflation in the month.

Food inflation rose by three basis points to 5.30 percent from 5.27 percent a month ago, while non-food surged 10 basis points to 5.92 percent from 5.82 percent.

In September, the prices of onion, ginger, dried chili, vegetables, fish, and broiler chicken went up compared to a month ago, the BBS said in an analysis.

Onion prices saw the sharpest increase in the food basket.

Onion prices surged sharply last month after traders hiked rates amid an Indian ban on export of the vegetable.

Retail prices of onion soared 25 percent overnight to Tk 55-70 per kg in the markets of Dhaka city on September 14, according to data of the Trading Corporation of Bangladesh.

The prices went on to rise to Tk 90-95 a kg on the last day of September.

In the non-food sub-sector, the cost of health treatment and the price of educational items rose last month, according to BBS data.

The data showed urban inflation went up to 5.41 percent from 5.34 percent, driven largely by the increase in the non-food inflation, which rose 17 basis points in a month to 5.42 percent in September.

General inflation in urban areas rose to 5.80 percent, up five basis points from August. Both food and non-food inflation went up in urban areas.

The government has targeted a 5.5 percent inflation rate in the current fiscal year. It was able to contain it at 5.48 percent last fiscal year, comfortably below the target of 5.6 percent.

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