Bulgaria annual inflation hits new 24-year high at 17.7% in August

Bulgaria’s annual consumer price index (CPI) recorded 17.7 per cent inflation in August 2022, rising from 17.3 per cent a month earlier, data released by the National Statistical Institute (NSI) on September 14 showed.

This was the highest year-on-year increase in consumer prices since May 1998, when the annual inflation figure was 18.8 per cent.

At the time, Bulgaria had just finished emerging from the 1996/97 economic crisis. The August 2022 figure also exceeds the 15.3 per cent annual inflation peak recorded in June 2008, during the global financial crisis.

Monthly inflation in August was 1.2 per cent, compared to 1.1 per cent recorded in July.

Food prices in August were up 1.2 per cent compared to the previous month, while non-food prices rose by 0.1 per cent and services prices increased by 2.7 per cent.

Compared to August 2021, food prices were 23.6 per cent higher, while non-food and services prices rose by 16.6 per cent and 11.9 per cent, respectively.

The harmonised CPI figure, calculated by NSI for comparison with European Union data, rose by 0.8 per cent on a monthly basis in August, while the annual harmonised CPI inflation was 15 per cent.

Food and beverage prices were 24.1 per cent higher, on an annual basis, while the price of utilities and housing increased by 25.5 per cent and transportation costs were 19.4 per cent higher compared to August 2021. The three categories account for about 48.5 per cent of the harmonised CPI basket.

(Consumer price index changes since August 2021. Bars illustrate the annual CPI inflation and lines show the monthly CPI inflation. Graphic: NSI)

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