Published: Wednesday May 22, 2013 MYT 6:11:00 PM

Malaysia's inflation rate up 1.7% in April, highest in 11 months

By Joseph Chin

KUALA LUMPUR: Higher prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages pushed Malaysia's inflation rate up 1.7% in April, which was the highest in 11 months.

The Statistics Department said on Wednesday the consumer price index (CPI) rose 1.7% from 104.5 to 106.3. The 1.7% increase was in line with Bloomberg's consensus forecast of 1.7%.

"The index for food & non-alcoholic beverages and non-food for April 2013 showed increases of 3.8% and 0.8%t respectively as compared to the same month in 2012," it said.

The department said the CPI, when compared with March, increased by 0.1%.

For the period January to April, the CPI increased by 1.5% to 106.1 from 104.5 in the previous corresponding period.

Alliance Research said following the April CPI, which was the highest in 11 months, it was maintaining its full-year target of 2.5% this year.

"While the government may likely retain subsidies for certain foodstuffs, it may be pressured to realign the subsidies for fuel (for example petroleum and diesel) and fuel-related products (e.g. cooking gas) in order to achieve the targeted fiscal deficit of 4% for this year," said the research house.

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