BY MARCHEL P. ESPINA
Inflation in Western Visayas remained at 3.2 percent in July, the third highest among the regions of the country, the Philippine Statistics Authority reported yesterday.
However, the national headline slightly went up to 2.7 percent from 2.5 percent in June, the PSA said.
The acceleration in the overall inflation was mainly caused by the increase in the transport index at 6.3 percent from 2.4 percent in the previous month, it said.
It also noted that annual increments were higher in alcoholic beverages and tobacco at 19.3 percent, housing, water, electricity, gas, and other fuels at 0.8 percent, and restaurant and miscellaneous goods and services at 2.5 percent.
Inflation for the food index at the national level continued to decelerate as it posted 2.5 percent in July from 2.7 percent in the previous month.
Bicol Region remained with the highest inflation in July at 4.2 percent from 4.3 percent in June, followed by Central Luzon with 3.5 percent from 2.7 percent.
The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, in a statement yesterday, said the July inflation was within its expected range of 2.2 to 3 percent.
It noted that transport inflation rose as higher global oil prices led to upward price adjustments of domestic petroleum products while inflation for transport services also accelerated which was attributed to the relatively limited public transportation.
The BSP said it will continue to monitor evolving economic and financial conditions to ensure that the monetary policy stance remains consistent with its price stability mandate.*