December 3, 2018 / 5:57 AM / 6 months ago

Philippine November CPI seen easing for first time in nearly a year: Reuters poll

FILE PHOTO: A vendor waits for customers at a rice and egg shop in Paranaque, Metro Manila, Philippines August 7, 2018. REUTERS/Erik De Castro

MANILA (Reuters) - Philippine consumer inflation likely eased in November for the first time in almost a year, coming off its highest rate in almost a decade, due to declining fuel and rice prices and a stronger peso, a Reuters poll showed.

The median forecast of 11 analysts was for the consumer price index in November to rise 6.2 percent from a year earlier PHCPI=ECI, slowing from 6.7 percent in September and October, a near 10-year high.

Analysts’ November forecasts ranged from 5.9 percent to 6.5 percent, while the central bank projected inflation to come in around 5.8-6.6 percent.

Only three of 11 analysts had forecasts for November core inflation PHCPXY=ECI, seen steady at 4.9 percent.

Some analysts said easing inflation should give the central bank room to pause at its Dec. 13 policy meeting after raising interest rates by a total 175 basis points at five consecutive meetings.

Following the rate hikes, the central bank has forecast average inflation of 3.5 percent next year, within its 2-4 percent target range, easing from its projected average this year of 5.3 percent, outside the same target range.

Reporting by Enrico dela Cruz

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