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Nigeria’s Inflation Declines For Nine Consecutive Months

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The continuous effort of the Federal Government to rein in on consumer prices has started yielding results.

The Consumer Price Index, which measures inflation rate rose 15.91 percent year-on-year in October, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) report released on Wednesday. This was lower than the 15.98 percent recorded in September and represents the ninth consecutive decline in the headline inflation.

Also, while average yearly inflation number for the first five months of the year stood at 17.45 percent, average headline inflation from June to October 2017 improved to 16.01 percent. Indicating that pace of price increase is gradually slowing down in relation to the fairly stable foreign exchange market.

On a monthly basis, inflation surged 0.76 percent in October, also 0.02 percent better than the 0.78 percent recorded in September. Making it the fifth consecutive month-on-month inflation headline is contracting.

However, despite the noticeable improvement in the headline inflation, the Food Index surged by 20.31 percent year-on-year in October, down slightly by 0.01 percent when compared to the 20.32 percent recorded in September.

Still, this is high and has continued to erode consumers’ buying power, especially when the average price of the first five months (18.67%) of the year is compared with the June-October average of 20.22 percent. Meaning, headline inflation is merely aided by the surged in forex liquidity due to rising global oil prices.

In April, the Federal Government had introduced series of forex policy to rein in on high foreign exchange and better stimulate the economy. While the Investors and Exporters forex window has been helpful in easing economic gridlock it has failed to curb rising food prices.

The Federal Government released its 2018 proposed budget of N8.6 trillion in November, saying the budget would consolidate on previous accomplishments.

The Naira remained fairly stable against the US dollar, trading around N363 per dollar.

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