Argentina Inflation Accelerated More Than Expected in September

Argentina Inflation Accelerated More Than Expected in September

Consumer prices in September rose 3.5% m/m; 52.5% y/y. Government implemented new price freezes on over 1,000 items

Consumer prices in Argentina climbed more than expected last month, prompting President Alberto Fernandez to expand unconventional price controls.

Inflation accelerated by 3.5% in September from August, above the 3% median estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg and a full percentage point higher than the previous month. From a year ago, inflation reached 52.5%, according to government data published Thursday.

Clothing, food, healthcare, restaurants and hotels led price increases in September. The monthly reading was the highest since April.

Seasonal factors, supply chain disruption, increased money printing to finance government spending and an ongoing reopening of economic activity from the pandemic helped drive prices higher. On Wednesday, Fernandez’s administration extended temporary price freezes to more than 1,200 household items, doubling down on an unorthodox inflation strategy that’s proved futile in the past.

Fernandez took the measure a month before Argentines’ cast ballots in the Nov. 14 midterm vote. Economists expect monthly inflation to accelerate in the final months of the year.

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