TACLOBAN CITY – The inflation rate of the region at the start of the year was pegged at 4.0 percent, a report from the Philippine Statistics Authority – Regional Statistical Service Office VIII (PSA – RSSO 8), said.
Wilma Perante, regional director, PSA – RSSO 8, told Leyte Samar Daily Express in an interview that Eastern Visayas welcomed 2019 with a 4.0 percent inflation rate.
Perante reported that the 0.4 percentage point is lower compared with the 4.4 percent inflation rate a month ago but equal with the same period last year.
The regional inflation rate was 0.4 percentage point lower than the 4.4 percent national average in January 2019.
Among other regions, Eastern Visayas ranked fourth from the bottom.
Perante said that four provinces in the region registered lower inflation rates in January 2019 compared with their figures in the previous month.
“Eastern Samar and Northern Samar posted the highest decrease of 2.2 percentage points each. Southern Leyte recorded a 0.7 percentage point decrease, while Biliran registered a decrease of 0.3 percentage point from their figures a month ago. On the other hand, increases in inflation rate were noted in Samar with 0.7 percentage point and Leyte at 0.4 percentage point. Samar recorded the highest inflation rate at 6.3 percent, while Biliran posted the lowest at 1.4 percent,” Perante said
Perante said that the heavily weighted food and non-alcoholic beverages eased down to 5.3 percent in January 2019 from its previous month’s rate of 6.0 percent, a decrease of 0.7 percentage point.
This can be traced to slower price increases of majority of the food items. Fruits index registered a negative inflation rate at 1.3 percent, from 2.1 percent in December 2018.
Inflation rate for transport also went down by 0.5 percentage point, from 3.0 percent in December 2018 to 2.5 percent in January 2019. This can be traced to the slower inflation rate seen in the index for operation of personal transport equipment.
The Purchasing Power of Peso (PPP) of the region was recorded at P0.80 in January 2019, slightly weaker than the P0.81 PPP a month ago.
PPP implies that goods and services worth P100 in January 2019 costs P80 only in 2012.
Biliran and Eastern Samar registered a 0.01 centavo decrease each in PPP compared with their figures in December 2018, while Southern Leyte recorded a 0.01 centavo increase from its PPP a month ago.
The rest of the provinces sustained their PPP last month. Leyte recorded the strongest PPP at P0.83. Biliran and Southern Leyte ranked second at P0.82, followed by Eastern Samar at P0.77. Northern Samar and Samar posted the weakest PPP at P0.76.