Middle East

Inflation, inflation, inflation

In the United States, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 7% year-on-year in December 2021. The Fed stopped calling inflation “temporary,” and this month Fed Chair Jerome Powell needed stricter monetary policy to prevent high inflation from “fixing.”
Preliminary estimates show that annual inflation in the euro area has accelerated for the sixth straight month, reaching a record high of 5% in December 2021 from 4.9% in November. Energy is expected to have the highest annual rate. Consumer prices in Japan rose 0.6% year-on-year in November 2021. The upward pressure is mainly due to the annual rise in fuel, light and water tariffs, confirming signs that soaring energy and raw materials are being pushed more widely through the Japanese economy. It is felt by consumers. In December 2021, the Bank of England raised interest rates for the first time since the outbreak of the pandemic, raising key interest rates from a record low of 0.1% to 0.25% as inflationary pressures increased. The UK Consumer Price Index for December 2021 was 5.4%
India’s retail inflation rate rose to 5.59% in December 2021, reaching its highest level in five months. If CPI inflation stays within the 2-6% target, RBI prefers to prioritize growth and maintain policy support that helps sustainability and expansion of recovery. China’s consumer price index eased in December 2021 as year-over-year price increases softened from 2.3% in November to 1.5%. Inflation rate in South Africa in November 2021 was 5.5%.
In November 2021, the South African Reserve Bank raised its main repo rate by 25 basis points from a record low of 3.75% amid growing concerns about rising inflation risk. Brazil’s inflation rate rose above 10% in 2021 to its highest level in six years. The surge in inflation made the Central Bank of Brazil one of the world’s most aggressive rate hike cycles last year, with benchmark interest rates rising from 2 to 9.25% in December 2021. Russia’s consumer price index rose 8.39% year-on-year in December 2021. Inflation surged in 2021 and is now more than double the central bank’s target of 4%. Behind the scenes of the rapid economic recovery from the early stages of the coronavirus, reports of labor shortages across many industries, and ongoing supply problems. With the exception of China, most emerging economies witnessed a surge in inflation in 2021.
Qatar’s consumer price index surged 6.47% in December 2021. This rise was primarily due to “recreation and culture,” “transportation,” food and beverages. Annual inflation in the United Arab Emirates rose to 2.58% in November 2021. Inflation has risen for the fourth straight month, driven by transportation, food and beverage, restaurant and hotel prices. In December 2021, Saudi Arabia’s annual inflation rate rose to 1.2%. This was mainly due to shipping prices and food. And the cost of beverages and furniture.
Inflation rate of consumer prices in Oman rose 3.56% in November 2021. Kuwait’s inflation rate fell to 3.8% in October 2021, rising from 4.1% in September to a five-year or higher high in 2021. Inflation in Bahrain remained at 0.70% in November 2021 from 0.70% in October 2021. In global space, inflation has skyrocketed in most countries. Inflation is skyrocketing in some countries at GCC. Monetary measures have been taken in some countries and monetary measures are underway in some countries. Federal Reserve policymakers have suggested starting a US interest rate hike in March 2022 to combat inflation.

* Dr. R Seetharaman is Group CEO of Doha Bank.



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