The annual rate of inflation in Romania tempered pace to 6.71 percent in March over 6.89 percent the month before, contradicting analysts’ expectations and fueled by higher prices for non food goods and food stuff, the Bucharest-based Statistics Institute (INS) announced, NewsIn informs.
Analysts NewsIn polled anticipated annual inflation in March at 6.4 percent – 6.6 percent, counting on the national currency’s stabilization and on the lower demand. The inflation rate in March stands at similar level to January’s rate.

Consumer prices added 0.50 percent in March after non food products were 0.68 percent more expensive and food stuff prices increased by 0.39 percent. Tariffs for services, calculated in euros but paid in lei, rose by 0.33 percent, INS showed.

The highest price increases were registered in March at exotic fruits (8.28 percent), tobacco (3.59 percent) and sugar (1.71 percent). Fuels were 0.70 percent more expensive. On the other hand, prices for eggs and oil lost 5.11 percent and 3.18 percent respectively.

Rents were 0.11 percent more expensive in March over February. Prices for cars and auto parts fell by 0.29 percent in the same period.

Romania’s central bank (BNR) targets a 3.5 percent annual inflation in 2009, plus or minus one percentage point. However, the last prognosis indicates a level of 4.5 percent for the year-end inflation.

At the end of last year the annual rate of inflation had slipped to 6.3 percent, below BNR’s target for year-end rate of 6.7 percent, but way above the annual aim of 3.8 percent, take or leave one percentage point.

The head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) mission in Romania, Jeffrey Franks, warned authorities at the end of March that reaching the inflation target this year and keeping it at a sustainable level the next years are crucial.

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