(Updates with economist comment in fourth paragraph.)
Oct. 12 (Bloomberg) -- Ghana’s inflation rate was unchanged for a third consecutive month in September, adding to expectations the central bank may keep interest rates on hold.
The inflation rate stayed at 8.4 percent, Grace Bediako, a statistician at the Ghana Statistical Service, told reporters in the capital, Accra, today. Prices declined 1.52 percent in the month.
The Bank of Ghana left its benchmark interest rate unchanged on Sept. 1, after lowering it twice this year, as rising electricity and water costs threatened to boost inflation. The cedi slumped 4.7 percent against the dollar in September, extending its decline this year to 8.4 percent, adding to price pressures.
“As much as the central bank will take comfort from these numbers, the emphasis should be on the outlook,” Razia Khan, head of Africa research at Standard Chartered Plc in London, said in an e-mail today. “The cedi has succumbed in some measure to the volatility that has affected other markets, and domestic pressures are ramping up, making the inflation outlook more worrying.”
The central bank will make its next interest rate decision on Oct. 19. The cedi was little changed at 1.6319 against the dollar as of 2:33 p.m. in Accra.
Inflation eased last month as food prices increased at a slower pace of 3.7 percent in September from 3.9 percent a month earlier, said Bediako.
“Barring any significant external shocks, inflation should again record a small change in the coming month, due to the favorable food harvest,” Bediako said.
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