Annual inflation rate, up to 4pct in December, above BNR forecast

The annual inflation rate went up 4 percent in December 2019, from 3.8 percent in November, given that food prices increased by 5.08 percent and non-food prices by 3.31 percent, while the price of services registered an advance of 4.16 percent, according to data released on Tuesday by the National Institute of Statistics (INS). "In December 2019, consumer prices were 4.0 percent higher YoY. The annual rate based on the Harmonized Index of Consumer Prices (HICP) is 4.0 percent. The average consumer price index in the last 12 months (January 2019 - December 2019) compared to the previous 12 months (January 2018 - December 2018), based on the HICP, is 3.8 percent. The HICP-based average rate is 3.9 percent," according to the INS. The National Bank of Romania (BNR) decreased its inflation forecast for the end of 2019 to 3.8 percent, from 4.2 percent, and estimates an inflation of 3.1 percent by the end of this year, announced on November 8, BNR Governor Mugur Isarescu, who presented the central bank's Quarterly Inflation Report. The National Commission for Strategy and Prognosis (CNSP) estimates, in the Autumn Forecast 2019 published on November 27, that the process of disinflation will continue due to the exhaustion of the excess consumption demand, and the average annual inflation will reach 2.6 percent in 2023 , up from 3.8 percent in 2019. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has revised upwards the estimates on consumer prices in Romania in 2019, to an average annual growth of 4.2 percent, compared to a 3.3 percent advance expected in spring, while in 2020 prices are expected to rise by 3.3 percent, compared to a 3 percent increase as estimated in spring.AGERPRES(RO - author: George Banciulea, editor: Andreea Marinescu; EN - author: Simona Iacob, editor: Maria Voican)

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