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[MANILA] Philippine consumer prices rose in March at their fastest pace in more than two years with seven of 11 commodity groups posting higher upticks, including energy prices, the statistics agency said on Wednesday.
Annual headline inflation was 3.4 per cent last month, faster than February's 3.3 per cent and matching the forecast in a Reuters poll. The level was within the central bank's 3.0-3.8 per cent projection for the month.
Core inflation, which strips out volatile food and fuel items, was 2.9 per cent in March, accelerating from 2.7 per cent the month before.
Prices rose 0.2 per cent last month from February.
Despite inflation's steady rise since the last quarter of 2016, the Philippine central bank expects it to remain within the 2-4 per cent target this year and has kept its benchmark interest rate steady at 3 per cent.