Home Business News OECD headline inflation stable at 5.7% in February 2024, food inflation continues to slow 

OECD headline inflation stable at 5.7% in February 2024, food inflation continues to slow 

by Thea Coates Finance Reporter
8th Apr 24 12:16 pm

Year-on-year inflation in the OECD as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) was stable in February 2024 at 5.7%, having hovered around 6.0% since May 2023.

Headline inflation fell in three-quarters of OECD countries, with the largest monthly declines recorded in Poland and Sweden and the largest rise in Türkiye. Headline inflation was below 2.0% in seven OECD countries and remained negative in Costa Rica.

Food inflation continued to decline for the 15th consecutive month, reaching 5.3% in February after 6.3% in January, and increasing in only four OECD countries.

OECD food inflation was lower than headline inflation for the first time since November 2021. OECD energy inflation increased but remained moderately negative at minus 0.5% in February, despite strong energy inflation in Türkiye and Colombia. OECD core inflation (inflation less food and energy) continued to decline but remained high at 6.4%, reflecting sticky services prices.

Year-on-year inflation was also stable in the G7 at 2.9% in February, its lowest level since April 2021.

It increased in Japan, reflecting a base effect, as energy prices had declined significantly in February 2023 with the introduction of energy subsidies.

By contrast, the United Kingdom and Germany registered the strongest declines in headline inflation in February 2024. Core inflation was the main contributor to headline inflation in most G7 countries.

In the euro area, year-on-year inflation as measured by the Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (HICP) declined to 2.6% in February compared to 2.8% in January.

The decline in food inflation was about twice as large as that of the OECD, while core inflation declined at a similar pace to that of the OECD. In March 2024, Eurostat’s flash estimate pointed to another decline in euro area headline (to 2.4%) and core inflation (to 2.9% after 3.1% in February), with a slowing decline in energy prices.

In the G20, year-on-year inflation rose to 6.9% in February compared to 6.4% in January, reaching its highest level since March 2023. This rise was driven partly by an increase in headline inflation in China, which turned positive for the first time since August 2023. Headline inflation also increased in Saudi Arabia and Indonesia and jumped even further in Argentina. It was broadly stable in Brazil and South Africa.

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