According to Rosstat, CPI accelerated to 0.6% MoM in March (from 0.4% MoM in February), while in annual terms, it was flat at 3.7% YoY.
The detailed breakdown reveals that services and non-food inflation remained unchanged in March, while food inflation subsided to a new historical low of
1.3% YoY (from 1.5% YoY).
Core inflation increased to 0.5% MoM (from 0.4% MoM), while in annual terms, it softened to 5.5% YoY (from 5.7% YoY).
The latest CPI print is consistent with the weekly data. We expect CPI to stay around the current level until the summer, before rising on the back of
regulated tariff hikes in July to 7% YoY at the end of 2012.
The CBR will most likely keep interest rates unchanged at its next policy meeting, scheduled for next week, as the economy has seen growth rebound
and 2H12 inflation risks remain elevated. The CBR has also voiced concern that looser monetary policy (due to FX interventions) might fuel inflation laterthis year.