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[BANGKOK] Thailand's annual headline consumer prices rose for a fourth straight month in July, driven by higher prices of food and cigarettes, the Commerce Ministry said on Monday.
The headline CPI index edged up 0.1 per cent in July from a year earlier after rising 0.38 per cent in June. A Reuters poll had forecast a rise of 0.45 per cent in June.
July's annual core inflation, which strips out raw food and energy prices, was 0.76 per cent, slightly below the 0.80 per cent both in the poll and the June result.
Inflation in Thailand has also been held down by government price controls, subsidies and sluggish consumption at a time when household debt remains high.
Low inflation is one reason the Bank of Thailand has left its policy interest rate unchanged at 1.50 per cent since April 2015. The rate is just a quarter point above the record low during the global financial crisis.
The central bank next reviews monetary policy on Aug 3, and most economists expect no change.