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​Producer prices rose 0.4% in January, driven by soaring electricity charges

By Park Yoon-bae Posted : February 23, 2023, 10:31 Updated : February 23, 2023, 10:31

Producer prices increased 0.4 percent month-on-month in January, driven by soaring utility charges, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK) on February 23. [Yonhap]

SEOUL -- Producer prices rose 0.4 percent last month from December, driven by soaring electricity charges, according to data released by the Bank of Korea (BOK) on February 23.
 
The produce price index increased to 120.29 in January, up 0.4 percent from a month before. The rise came after the index fell 0.3 percent in November and 0.4 percent in December. Compared with the January 2021 figure, the price index jumped by 5.1 percent.
 
"The producer price increase was attributed to a hike in electricity charges fuel prices," said Suh Jung-seok, head of the BOK's price statistics department.
 
The price rise is expected to put pressure on consumer prices in coming months, thereby making it difficult to bring inflation under control in a short period of time.
 
The price index for electricity, gas and tap water surged 4 percent month-on-month in January. Particularly, electricity charges soared 10.9 percent, hitting the highest growth since they skyrocketed 37.1 percent in February 1980.
 
The prouder prices of agricultural products climbed 4.9 percent, and those of fisheries goods edged up 0.4 percent. Livestock and dairy products saw their producer prices fell 5.8 percent.
 
Service prices edged up 0.5 percent. Telecommunication and broadcasting services climbed 1 percent, and dining and lodging rose 0.5 percent. However, the producer prices of manufacturing goods edged down 0.1 percent.

Consumer prices jumped 5.2 percent in January from a year earlier, remaining at the 5 percent level for the nineth consecutive month. The increase was mainly due to public utility charges which surged 28.3 percent year-on-year. Electricity charges soared 29.5 percent and city gas rates shot up 36.2 percent. Heating bills also jumped 34 percent.

 

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