Bulgaria’s consumer price index (CPI) rose by 0.2 per cent in February, pushing the annual deflation figure at the end of the month down to 0.5 per cent, data from the National Statistical Institute (NSI) showed on March 13.
This was only the fourth time in the past 12 months that the CPI figure showed an increase and the first since October 2014, when monthly inflation reached a two-year high of 0.9 per cent.
Food prices were the main reason for inflation in February, rising by 1.1 per cent to offset a 0.6 per cent drop in non-food prices, while services prices remained flat compared to January. In annual terms, food prices were unchanged compared to February 2014, while non-food prices were 4.2 per cent down and services were three per cent more expensive.
The harmonised CPI figure, calculated by the statistics board for comparison with European Union data, rose by 0.1 per cent in February. On an annual basis, the harmonised CPI was 1.7 per cent lower than in February 2014.
Food and beverages were flat, on an annual basis, and transportation costs were down 10 per cent compared to a year earlier, while the price of utilities and rent has increased by 5.9 per cent. The three categories account for just over half of the harmonised consumer price index.