Peru’s inflation rate unexpectedly quickened last month after a jump in schooling and food costs fueled the steepest rise in consumer prices since 2008.
Consumer prices climbed 0.91 percent after a 0.09 percent decline in February, the national statistics agency said in an e-mailed statement today. The median forecast of 10 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg was for a 0.55 percent increase. The annual inflation rate quickened to 2.59 percent from 2.45 percent the previous month.
The central bank has kept its benchmark lending rate unchanged for 22 consecutive months on the expectation inflation will ease to 2 percent this year amid the fastest growth among South America’s major economies. Policy makers target inflation at 2 percent plus or minus 1 percentage point. Their next meeting will be April 11.
Monthly fees at private schools in the capital Lima jumped 8.3 percent for the academic year that started last month while registration costs at state schools also rose, the agency said. Food and drink prices climbed 0.8 percent from February.
The consumer-price index is based on a survey of businesses in the Lima Metropolitan area. Food and drink products constitute 38 percent of the index.
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