Business & Economy

Consumer prices in China contract for the first time since 2009

Beijing, Nov 10 (efe-epa).- China’s consumer price index (CPI), the main indicator of inflation, contracted 0.5 percent year-on-year in November, representing its first decline since October 2009, according to official data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Wednesday.

The index had already recorded its lowest growth in 11 years in October mainly due to a drop in the price of pork – the most popular meat among Chinese consumers – for the first time after 19 months of increases.

Pork prices have suffered tremendous volatility due to the African swine flu epidemic, which since mid-2018, has wiped out tens of millions of animals in China and raised serious problems in production.

While in October the first decline in pork prices after months of increases had been 2.8 percent year-on-year, in the 11th month of the year the drop was much higher, 12.5 percent.

Pork prices had risen by 25.5 percent in September and by 52.6 percent in August, data that puts into perspective a rapid fall that Dong Lijuan, an NBS statistician, also attributes to the continuous recovery of pig production.

In general, food prices fell 2 percent in November after increasing 2.2 percent in October, their first decline since January 2018.

The prices of other types of products also included in the CPI fell by 0.1 percent.

The statistics agency also released the producer price index (PPI), an indicator that measures and tracks wholesale inflation.

In November, the PPI registered its smallest decline since March, falling 1.5 percent.

In comparison with the previous month, wholesale prices rose by 0.5 percent, which represents a return to a month-on-month expansion after they did not register any variation in October. EFE-EPA


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