Bulgaria’s consumer price index shrank by 0.4 per cent in February 2014, with year-on-year figure showing 2.6 per cent deflation, data from the National Statistical Institute (NSI) showed on March 13. Bulgaria has now recorded negative consumer price index (CPI) growth in nine of the past 12 months.
Food prices were 0.2 per cent higher than in January, but non-food prices were down one per cent and services prices fell by 0.3 per cent, NSI said.
In annual terms, food prices were 1.3 per cent lower than at the end of February 2013. Services were 5.3 per cent cheaper – thanks to the three electricity price cuts ordered by the regulator over the past 12 months – and non-food prices fell by 2.2 per cent over that period, NSI data showed.
The deflation trend is expected to end when NSI announces March figures next month, when the first of the three electricity price cuts will have become part of the lower annual base.
The harmonised CPI figure, calculated by the statistics board for comparison with European Union data, shrank by 0.6 per cent in February. On an annual basis, the harmonised CPI recorded 2.1 per cent deflation.
Food and beverages were 1.3 per cent cheaper, on an annual basis, while the price of utilities and rent has fallen by 7.3 per cent and transportation costs were down 3.9 per cent over the previous 12 months. The three categories account for just over half of the harmonised consumer price index.