Wholesale price growth eases in March

GROWTH in the wholesale price of general goods in March was at its lowest level in more than two years, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

The general wholesale price index (GWPI) eased to 2.5% in March from the 2.8% reading in February and 4.8% a year earlier.

The recent low was 2.2% posted in June 2021.

The GWPI averaged 3% in the year to date, against the 6.2% posted a year earlier.

Security Bank Corp. Chief Economist Robert Dan J. Roces attributed the slower growth in March to economic slowdowns in key markets.

“Inflation and elevated interest rates are factors. Additionally, shifting investor sentiment in commodity markets might also have led to the observed price adjustments,” Mr. Roces said in a text message.

Inflation was 3.7% in March, making it the fourth straight month that the inflation was contained within the 2-4% target range set by the  Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.

The PSA said the March reading was mainly driven by sluggish growth in manufactured goods classified chiefly by materials, the sub-index for which eased to 1.3% from 2.2% in February. — Mariedel Irish U. Catilogo