Morocco's consumer inflation jumps to 2.2 per cent

Reuters, Sunday 20 Feb 2011

Rise blamed on escalating food prices

Morocco's consumer inflation rate leapt to an annual 2.2 per cent, more than twice its level in December, due mainly to higher food prices, its planning authority said.

The food price index in January was 4.1 per cent above its level a year earlier, the High Planning Commission (HCP) said in a statement.

Compared with December, the consumer price index rose 0.2 per cent, it said. The index recorded a 0.9 per cent drop monthly drop in December.

Underlying inflation, used by the central bank to set benchmark interest rate and excluding volatile prices and state tariffs, edged up 1.1 per cent in January compared with the same month in 2010 and 0.2 per cent compared to December 2010.

The consumer price index closed 2010 at a lower-than-expected 0.9 per cent increase.

The government expects economic growth of 4 per cent in 2010 and projected 5 per cent growth and 2 per cent inflation for 2011.

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