Experts polled by Reuters predict that Colombia’s rate of inflation in February stood at 1.03%.
The predictions come ahead of Colombia’s national statistics agency DANE’s announcement of the official inflation rate for February, to be released on Friday.
The predicted 1.03% rate is an increase from the 0.84% inflation recorded in February last year, and is caused largely by the damaging effect of the El Niño weather phenomenon on crops pushing up food prices.
“The phenomenon of ‘El Niño’ is driving food prices, we may get outside of the inflation target at some point, but there is nothing to worry about,” Carlos Ramos, head of economic research at the firm Interbolsa, told Portfolio.com. The inflation target is 2 – 4%
A January survey by the Central Bank predicted that Colombia’s annual inflation could hit 3.88% by the end of 2010, reports Reuters.
Statistics released by DANE on Thursday showed that the country’s producer prices rose 0.85% in February, led by agricultural products which rose 3.15%.
The estimated rate for February would make cumulative inflation 2.3%, over the 12-month period until February.