CARACAS, Friday January 11, 2013 | Update
INFLATION | According to the central bank

Venezuela's inflation in December up 3.5%; ends at 20.1% in 2012

The food sector recorded the largest raise in prices during the last month of 2012 as it grew 5.7%. Shortage, meanwhile, reached its highest point ever since early 2008, at 16.3%

Food prices increased by 5.7% during December (File photo: Enio Perdomo)
Friday January 11, 2013  03:27 PM
The Central Bank of Venezuela (BCV) on Friday said that the National Consumer Price Index (CPI) climbed 3.5% in December, from 2.3% in November.  Thus, inflation jumped for the fourth consecutive month and continued to grow in the last quarter of 2012.

The BCV said that inflation throughout 2012 stood at 20.1%, slightly higher than the number estimated by the central bank president (19.9%) in his year-end message.

The sector with the largest rise was food prices (up 5.7%). Transportation climbed by 3.3%, while clothing and footwear, and restaurants and hotels jumped 3.1%. Leisure and culture increased by 2.7%.

Regarding the shortage index in the Metropolitan Area of Caracas, the central bank said it increased to 16.3% in December – the highest level since January 2008, when shortage hit its highest level ever at 24.7%.
Venezuelan reservoirs in critical conditions

According to forecasts made in August by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), repercussions of El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO) phenomenon would be enhanced at least until March 2016.

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