Remember how last Friday the government said it expected August’s inflation rate to be around zero?
Well, it seems that was way too high. At least as far as the City of Buenos Aires is concerned. The official inflation index of the City of Buenos Aires indicates consumer prices actually decreased (yes, decreased!) 0.8 percent for the month of August. The numbers illustrate the effect of the Supreme Court decision that forced the government to roll back increases in gas prices. If the hikes in prices had been implemented, inflation would have risen by 0.9 percent.
So far this year, inflation in the City of Buenos Aires was 31 percent through August.
Everyone is coming out with their figures ahead of the Indec statistic agency’s highly anticipated release of August data tomorrow. The Congressional Consumer Price Index (Congress CPI) indicated that the August inflation rate was 0.5 percent, a 43.5 percent increase from last year and 30.8 percent in the first eight months of the year. If it weren’t for the Supreme Court decision, inflation rate would have been 1.6 percent.
The Congress CPI is basically an inflation rate that is published by the opposition every month, which amounts to an average of the inflation estimates published by private consultancies (the methodology to reach these numbers is unknown). It used to be presented by current Security Minister Patricia Bullrich and was picked up by the Renewal Front (FR) and the Progressive Party after President Mauricio Macri came to power.
The price hikes that have played a key role in lowering the inflation rate in August are likely to come into effect in October. Thus, in the same way that August’s inflation rate may be a lot lower than expected, the inflation rate for October would be higher.
When President Mauricio Macri came to power, a statistics emergency was declared and the INDEC stopped publishing the inflation rate for a while as the institution was “normalized.” The INDEC returned in June, when it published the inflation rate for May, and unlike previous years, has generally reported higher numbers than the Congress CPI.