The inflation Mexico slowed more than expected in February, although it continued to be well above the official target, fueling prospects that the central bank will have to raise its key rate again in its next announcement at the end of March, albeit at a lower rate. minor rhythm.
The general consumer price index was located at a 7.62% at the interannual rate, below the 7.76% registered in the first half of February, according to figures released on Thursday by National Institute of Statistics and Geography (Inegi).
The figure was also below market estimates, which had anticipated a rate of 7.69%, according to a Reuters poll.
In turn, inflation underlying, considered a better parameter to measure the trajectory of prices because it eliminates high volatility products, dropped to 8.29% compared to the previous fortnight when it was placed at 8.38%.
Within it, the prices of merchandise increased 0.65% at a monthly rate and those of services, 0.56%.
The products that reported the highest increase were bananas, with a variation of 11.26% and the eggs, with 9.04%. In contrast, those who registered the greatest decrease were the serrano chili, whose monthly variation decreased 20.18%, followed by tomato, with -18.54%.
On the other hand, the price index not underlying it rose 0.40% at the monthly rate and 5.65% at the annual rate. Within this, the prices of agricultural products decreased 0.07%, while energy prices and tariffs authorized by the government grew 0.80%.
Finally, the Minimum Consumption Basket Price Index (IPCCM) had a monthly variation of 0.59% and an annual variation of 8.11 percent. In the same period of 2022, the corresponding figures were 0.95 and 7.86%, in that order.
In its latest monetary policy announcement, the central bank increased the interest rate of reference by 50 base points (bp), above market expectations, citing a complex inflationary scenario and anticipated that in its next notice on March 30 it could apply a smaller increase.
He Bank of Mexico (Banxico) also raised its forecast for headline inflation, estimating that it would peak in the first quarter of 2023 and end the year on a 4.9% per year, versus the past forecast of 4.1%.