Singapore’s Core Inflation Hikes 5.5% in January, the Fastest Pace in 14 Years

Singapore’s core inflation ramped up to 5.5% in January, the fastest pace in 14 years but slightly lower than expected. This was the fastest pace since 5.5% in November 2008 and higher than 5.3% in September last year.

The core inflation rate, not including private road transport and accommodation costs, rose to a peak of 5.1% in December, according to data from the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) on Thursday.

This increase was driven by the higher prices of services, food, retail, and other goods, along with the sales tax that increased and took effect in January.

According to Selena Ling of Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation (OCBC), core inflation is still on the rise and further tightening is likely.

Brian Tan at Barclays said that in January, inflation data would mostly be in line with MAS expectations, and he expected the central bank would not change its monetary policy this year.

The core inflation rate is expected to be 3.5% to 4.5% this year, while the headline inflation rate is expected to be between 5.5% and 6.5%.