Inflation Hits 8.2% in June, Highest in 10 Months

Consumer inflation rose for the fourth straight month in June to hit 8.2 percent, a 10-month high, driven by higher food prices, the statistics bureau said.
Food prices, the biggest contributor to the headline index, jumped 9.8 percent year-on-year in June, after rising 9.7 percent the previous month.
“Prices were pushed higher as a result of higher prices in the bread and cereals, meats, fish, and dairy groups,” the National Bureau of Statistics said in a statement.
Consumer inflation in Africa’s largest economy and top oil exporter rose from 8 percent in May.
It has crept up from a five-year low of 7.8 percent in October due to rising food prices.
Nigeria’s central bank has said it wants to keep inflation between 6 and 9 percent this year and has a longer-term goal of reducing it to around 5 percent by the end of 2015.
“Inflation is likely to become … a concern to markets in the second half as our forecasts suggest a peak in inflation in August (at) 8.7 percent, close to the upper band of the central bank’s target,” analysts at Vetiva Capital said in a note.
“With the recent compression in fixed-income yields, as short-tenor maturities head south below the 10 percent levels, the risks of negative real rates on Nigerian assets will again resurface.”
The central bank will hold its monetary policy meeting next Tuesday to set interest rates and is sure to take rising inflation into account. Analysts expect rates to remain on hold at 12 percent but say the tightening cycle could resume if the inflation outlook worsens.
The statistics office said on Tuesday it expects Nigeria’s economy to grow by at least 6.2 percent this year following a solid first-quarter performance.
Source: Reuters

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