Singapore’s CPI-All Items inflation remains below zero in June

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SINGAPORE, July 23 (Xinhua) — The Ministry of Trade and Industry (MTI) and Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) said in a joint press release on Thursday that Singapore’s consumer price index for all items (CPI-All Items) inflation was -0.5 percent in June, compared to -0.8 percent in May.

This is the third successive month for Singapore to see negative CPI-All Items inflation. The two authorities attribute the inflation increase mainly to a smaller decline in private transport costs.

According to the press release, Singapore’s private transport costs fell by 4.4 percent in June, compared to a 6.8 percent decline in May. The private transport costs fell at a slower pace due to smaller declines in car and petrol prices.

Meanwhile, the MAS core inflation, which excludes the costs of accommodation and private road transport, remained unchanged at -0.2 percent in June. This occurred as a steeper drop in the cost of services was offset by higher food inflation, as well as smaller declines in the cost of retail and other goods and in the cost of electricity and gas.

The services inflation fell from -0.8 percent in May to -1 percent in June, due to larger declines in holiday expenses and airfares. According to the press release, the prices of holiday expenses and airfares were not available in June 2020 due to international measures to contain the COVID-19 outbreak, thus the changes in the prices of these components were imputed using the overall price change implied by the CPI-All Items, in line with international guidelines.

The pace of decline in the cost of electricity and gas eased in June to 3.9 percent from 4.6 percent in May, as new subscriptions under the Open Electricity Market (OEM) slowed.

The food inflation edged up from 2.2 percent in May to 2.3 percent in June, due to a larger increase in the prices of non-cooked food items.

The cost of retail and other goods declined by 1.8 percent in June, compared to a 2.3 percent decline in May, as prices of clothing and footwear and telecommunications equipment fell at a more gradual pace.

MTI and MAS reiterated in the press release that Singapore’s inflation is expected to remain subdued. Both MAS Core Inflation and CPI-All Items inflation are forecast to average between -1 percent and 0 in 2020. Enditem

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