(Adds details from central bank, Indec report)
BUENOS AIRES May 10 Argentina's statistics
agency said on Wednesday 12-month inflation through April was
27.5 percent, the first time it has published 12-month inflation
since President Mauricio Macri took office in December 2015 and
revamped data calculations.
The agency, Indec, said April inflation was 2.6 percent,
above median analyst expectations for a consumer price increase
of 2.1 percent in a Reuters poll.
Argentina's central bank raised its benchmark interest rate
to 26.25 percent on April 11, citing higher inflation
expectations. The bank held the rate steady on Tuesday and said
April inflation would be higher than desired but rise at a
slower pace in May.
The bank is targeting 12-month inflation of 12 to 17 percent
for the end of the year, though the latest central bank survey
of economists puts it at 21 percent.
Clothing prices rose 5.1 percent in April, while housing and
basic services were up 4.6 percent, Indec said. Consumer prices
rose 9.1 percent overall in the first four months of the year.
Indec has been publishing inflation for Greater Buenos
Aires, but in July will debut a national index the central bank
will use to formulate monetary policy.
As part of the overhaul at Indec, the agency stopped
publishing inflation data for the first few months of 2016 to
refine methodology, meaning Argentina has lacked 12-month data
Indec was widely accused of publishing unrealistically low
inflation data under former President Cristina Fernandez. The
International Monetary Fund recognized Argentina's efforts to
restore credibility to its official statistics when it lifted
its censure of Indec last November.
(Reporting by Caroline Stauffer; Editing by Diane Craft and