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New Zealand inflation rises at stronger than expect rate in Q1 of 2017
Thu, 20 Apr 2017 07:49:53 GMT
Source: Dukascopy Bank SA
"The core reading is still low and the trimmed mean is creeping back into the target band but it's still on the lower end. Inflation is still pretty soft by historical standards. For us, the RBNZ will probably just remain on the sidelines from here."
- Tom Kennedy, JP Morgan
Inflation growth in New Zealand hit its five-year high in the three-month period to March, surprising markets. Statistics New Zealand reported on Thursday that inflation rose at an annualised 2.2% rate in the Q1 of 2017, the highest level in five years. Thus, the inflation rate hit the mid-point of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand's inflationary target range of 1-3% for the first time in more than a year. On a quarterly basis, the Consumer Price Index climbed 1% in the March quarter, while market analysts anticipated a slighter increase of 0.8%. Therefore, annual inflation growth surpassed analysts' expectations for a 2.0% rise. Following the release, the New Zealand Dollar rose from 0.7000 to 0.7042 against its US counterpart. The Q1 inflation acceleration was in large part driven by higher oil and food prices and a tax hike on alcohol and tobacco. The housing market also provided a significant boost to inflation in the reported quarter. Nevertheless, New Zealand's Central bank is unlikely to change its monetary policy despite stronger-than-expect inflation data. The Bank's interest rates are also expected to remain unchanged at record lows of 1.75%. Excluding volatile items, such as petrol, alcohol and cigarettes, annual inflation climbed just 1.5% but remained within the Bank's target range.
© Dukascopy Bank SA
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