Inflation in Spain reaches its highest level in 37 years

The National Institute of Statistics of Spain confirmed the CPI for March, which rose to 9.8%. This is the highest rate in 37 years due to increases in electricity, gasoline and food costs

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 3 % in March compared to the previous month and suddenly raised its year-on-year rate by more than two points, to 9.8 %, its highest value in 37 years, specifically since May 1985, according to the definitive data published this Wednesday by the National Institute of Statistics (INE in Spanish).

Core inflation rises to 3.4 %, its highest level since 2008, and prices shoot up 3 % compared to February. With the data for March, which coincides with the figures advanced at the end of last month by Statistics, the interannual CPI chains its fifteenth consecutive positive rate.

According to the INE, the year-on-year rise in the CPI to 9.8 % is due to the rise in the prices of electricity and diesel for heating; the increase in fuel prices for personal vehicles; the increase in the prices of restaurants and lodging services, and the “generalized” increase in food prices, especially fish and shellfish, meat, legumes and vegetables, and milk, cheese and eggs.

Without taking into account the reduction of the special tax on electricity and the variations on other taxes, the interannual CPI reached 10.7 % in March, nine tenths more than the general rate of 9.8 %. This is reflected in the CPI at constant taxes that the INE also publishes within the framework of this statistic.

Core inflation (excluding unprocessed food and energy products) increased four tenths in March, to 3.4 %; its highest value since September 2008. In this way, the underlying is more than six points below the rate of the general CPI.

In the last year, heating, lighting and water distribution have become more expensive by 68.3 %; oils and fats have increased their prices by 32.1 % and personal transport is 19.3 % more expensive due to the higher cost of fuel. Eggs and milk (11 % more expensive than a year ago) and sheep meat and fresh and frozen fish also recorded double-digit increases, with rises of 10.1 % in both cases.

The IPC triggers its monthly rate to 3 %

In monthly rate, the CPI registered an increase of 3 % in March compared to February, its highest monthly rise in any month since 2002, when the methodology of this statistic was changed to better capture the evolution of the market. Looking further back, taking earlier series, the monthly rise in March is the highest since August 1977.

In the third month of 2022, the Harmonized Consumer Price Index (IPCA) placed its interannual rate at 9.8 %, more than two points above that of February. For its part, the advance indicator of the IPCA advanced by 3.9 % in monthly rate.

Source: dpa

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