Annual inflation in Serbia falls to 4.5% in May

June 12 (VoirNews) – Consumer prices in Serbia increased by 4.5% year-on-year in May, compared to an annual increase of 5% in April, the statistics office announced on Wednesday.

In April, Serbia’s central bank predicted that annual inflation would return to the target range of 1.5% to 4.5% as early as May, a month earlier than expected. Inflation is expected to approach the targeted midpoint by the end of the year and remain around that level in the medium term, the central bank said.

In a monthly comparison, Serbia’s consumer price index (CPI) increased by 0.4% in May, after increasing by 0.7% in April, the statistics office said in a statement on Wednesday.

In annual terms, prices of food and beverages, which weigh the most in the consumer basket, increased by 1.3% in May, considerably slower than the 2.9% increase recorded in April, according to data from the statistics office.

“The easing of food inflation is the main takeaway from the May CPI figure, as food prices contributed just 0.2 percentage points to the headline CPI. The softening in food prices largely came from cheaper vegetables, as the release showed a price decline of 11.1% year-on-year. of vegetables, thereby reducing the overall CPI by 0.9 percentage points,” Erste Group analysts said in a note on Wednesday.

Prices for housing, water, energy and other fuels slowed their annual growth to 5.6% in May from 7.7% in April. However, the rise in transport prices accelerated from 4.5% in April to 7.1% in May, according to data from the Statistics Office.

In May, the cost of restaurant and hotel services recorded the strongest annual growth with prices rising 9.4%, following a 9.9% increase in April. The cost of alcohol and tobacco followed, rising 8.7% in May, faster than the 7.1% increase recorded in April.

Serbia’s annual inflation in December 2023 slowed to 7.6%, compared to 15.1% in December 2022.

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