Tuesday, 23 November 2004

Singapore and Hong Kong report minimal inflation

Inflation does not appear to be a problem in Singapore and Hong Kong.

Singapore inflation levels out in Oct
Singapore's consumer prices levelled out in October after two months or rises, broadly in line with market expectations, as an easing in a ban on Malaysian poultry knocked down food prices, data showed on Tuesday.

The flat consumer price index for October from September compared with expectations for a 0.1 percent fall, after seasonal adjustment, and marked a break from a trend of higher prices flowing from food costs and record high crude oil prices...

The annual inflation rate through October was 1.9 percent -- at the higher end of the 1.5-2 percent forecast range of the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) for 2004, and exactly in line with a median forecast of a Reuters poll.

Hong Kong Oct composite CPI up 0.2 pct yr-on-yr vs 0.7 pct rise in Sept
The composite consumer price index (CPI) in October rose 0.2 pct year-on-year, but slowed from a 0.7 pct year-on-year increase in September, the government said. A government spokesman said the year-on-year increase in the composite CPI for October was slower than the September rise due to the diminishing effect of the low base of comparison brought about by the property rental rates concession in the third quarter of 2003

With the world economy already showing signs of slowing and Asian currencies under pressure to appreciate, it is conceivable that we have seen the worst of inflation in Singapore and Hong Kong in the current economic cycle.

Update on November 24: According to the Department of Statistics, the Singapore CPI in Oct 2004 fell marginally by 0.1 percent over Sep 2004.

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