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Fast Comment NorwayCPI-ATE lower than generally expected, but deviation to NB not significant (rate hike in March)

  1. CPI-ATE unchanged in January, at 2.1 pct
  2. We and consensus expected 2.3 pct
  3. Norges Bank had 2.16 pct; deviation not significant (rate hike March)
CPI-ATE unchanged in January, at 2.1 pct (close to Norges Bank)
Core inflation, as measured by the CPI-ATE, was unchanged at 2.1 percent in January. The outcome was weaker than generally expected, as both we and consensus had forecast 2.3 percent. On the other hand, Norges Bank had forecast 2.16 percent. With regards to the central bank, the outcome for January landed within a normal range for forecasting-errors; the deviation would have to be +/-0.2 p.p to be deemed as significant. Thus our quick summary is that the latest inflation data are neutral to the key policy rate path (i.e rate hike in March). Moreover, the details reveal that the slight downside to Norges Bank’s inflation forecast was explained by lower price inflation for imported goods. This may be related to extensive campaigns in January, and thus we may see these prices picking up again in February. All told, the near-term inflation outlook appears to be well in line with Norges Bank. Also note we will get the February figures prior to the policy rate meeting in March.


Disclaimer

Marius Gonsholt Hov

Senior Economist

Norway

maho60@handelsbanken.no

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