Nigerian inflation rate slowed to 14.33 percent (year-on-year) in February 2018, which was 13th consecutive decline since January 2017, data released on Wednesday by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed.
This is the country’s lowest inflation rate since April 2016; having reached 18.72 per cent in 201 as cost rose less for food and non-alcoholic beverages and housing and utilities.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has maintained tight monetary policies to address the country’s inflation challenges, targeting a single digit inflation rate. It has pegged lending rate at an all-time high of 14 percent since July of 2016.
The Consumer Price Index (CPI) which measures inflation was 0.8 percent less than the rate recorded in January 2018 (15.13) per cent, increases were recorded in all COICOP divisions that yield the Headline Index.
The drop in inflation rate was underpinned on price movements recorded by All Items less farm produce or Core sub-index increased by 11.7 percent (year-on-year) in February 2018, down by 0.4 percent points from the rate recorded in January (12.10) percent.
On a month-on-month basis, the Headline index increased by 0.79 percent in February 2018, down by 0.01 percent points from the rate recorded in January.
The percentage change in the average composite CPI for the twelve month period ending February 2018 over the average of the CPI for the previous twelve month period was 15.93 percent, showing 0.29 percent point lower from 16.22 percent recorded in January 2018.
The Food Index increased by 17.59 percent (year-on-year) in February, down by 1.33 percent points from rate recorded in January 2018 (18.92) percent. During the month, all major food sub-indexes increased.
“During the month, the highest increases were seen in prices of Fuel and lubricants for personal transport equipment, Maintenance and repair of personal transport equipment, Narcotics, Vehicle spare parts, Passenger transport by air, Clearing, repair and hire of clothing, Hospital services,Domestic services and household services and Glassware, tableware and household utensils.
“The Urban inflation rate rose by 14.76 percent (year-on-year) in February 2018 from 15.56 percent recorded in January, while the Rural inflation rate also eased by 13.96 percent in February 2018 from 14.76 percent in January,” the NBS stated in its report.
It explained that on month-on-month basis, the urban index was upy 0.82 percent in February 2018, down by 0.01 from 0.83 percent recorded in January, while the rural index also rose by 0.77 percent in February 2018, showing no difference with the rate recorded in January.
“The corresponding twelve month year-on-year average percentage change for the urban index is 16.24 percent in February 2018. This is less than 16.55 percent reported in January, while the corresponding rural inflation rate in February 2018 is 15.64 percent compared to 15.89 percent recorded in January.”
The country’s inflation rate hit all-time high of 47.56 percent in January of 1996 and a record low of -2.49 percent in January of 2000.