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Inflation accelerates to 1.3% in November

Inflation accelerated to 1.3% in November after registering five consecutive months of deceleration, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported Thursday.

The latest figure compares with the 0.8% in October this year, and the 6% in November 2018.

This is the first uptick since inflation started to decelerate in June, when it clocked in at 2.7%.

The highest annual increases were registered in the alcoholic beverages and tobacco index, which increased by 17.6%.

"Those are actually due to the excise taxes. Ang base niya kasi last year, July last year nag-start," National Statistician Claire Dennis Mapa said in a press conference in Manila.

"That is a possibility," Mapa said when asked if the higher prices could be attributed to the holiday season.

Increases were also registered in health, which grew 3.1%; furnishing, household equipment, which grew by 2.8%; housing, water, electricity, gas, and other fuels, which grew by 1.2%; and communication, which grew by 0.3%.

Meanwhile, the index of food and non-alcoholic beverages registered an annual growth of 0% in November from the 0.9% drop in October.

Rice noted deflation for the seventh consecutive month at -8.3% from the -9.7% in October across the Philippines.

Meanwhile, prices of chicken and beef noted increases in the National Capital Region (NCR) and Region III, which Mapa attributed to the African Swine Fever.

In both regions, chicken prices increased 19% to 21%, and beef by 4.8% to 5.5%, while pork prices fell by 4% to 6%.

"Ang spike kasi sa chicken and beef, particularlly two regions NCR and Region III, parang 'yun na 'yung nakita natin last month," said Mapa. —KBK, GMA News