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Philippine central bank says it sees annual May inflation at 1.6-2.4%

[MANILA] The Philippine central bank expects annual inflation in May to be between 1.6 per cent to 2.4 per cent, its governor said on Wednesday.

That compares with inflation of 2.2 per cent in April from a year ago, the lowest rate in nearly two years. "Downward price pressures may come from the reduction in rice prices and power rates," Governor Amando Tetangco said in a mobile text message to reporters, adding a substantial increase in local oil prices and higher sugar prices could be offsetting factors in overall consumer prices.

The central bank kept its benchmark interest rate steady for a fifth straight meeting on May 14, with inflation not a threat and domestic conditions remaining robust.

REUTERS