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Inflation: Greek consumer prices rise 1.7% in March due to hikes in food, fuel, transport

Greece’s inflation rate rose to 1.7 percent in March, Greek Statistics Authority ELSTAT said on Monday. The rise is due to the mass price increases in food, alcoholic drinks, tobacco, telecommunications, heating oil and transport due to special fee in fuel. In February inflation rose to 1.3% and in January 1.2%. Extra charges and fees have been imposed as of 1. January 2017. the Greek consumer saw the price hikes long before the ELSTAT would record them..

Price increases according to ELSTAT are:

+1.6% in “Food and non-alcoholic beverages”, mainly fresh furit and vegetables, olive oil potatoes and coffee

+2.8% in “Alcoholic beverages and tobacco”

+ 0.1% “Clothing and footwear”

+3.6% “Housing” due to price increase in heating oil and natural gas.

+8.6% ‘Transport” due to price increase in fuel and lubricants, airplane tickers.

+2.1% “Communications” due to extra fees of 5% imposed to landlines and subscription television.

+1.7% in Hotels, cafes, restaurants”

The price hikes were partly balanced with price decreases in some goods and services like vehicle prices, pharmaceutical products, education/tuition fees.

Reuters notes that Greece had been in a protracted deflation mode since March 2013 based on its headline index, as wage and pension cuts and a multi-year recession took a heavy toll on Greek household incomes.

Deflation in Greece, which signed up to its first international bailout in 2010, hit its highest level in November 2013, when consumer prices registered a 2.9 percent year-on-year

Euro zone annual inflation slowed in March by far more than the market had expected, driven down mostly by a deceleration of energy price rises, based on estimates from the European Union
statistics office.

What is recorded as statistics rate, it mean in real life an extra expenditure of 10 euros per week in the supermarket. Price hikes amid low wages, high unemployment, permanent increasing direct and indirect taxes? “No, thanks!” say Greek consumers.

Beginning of the month, a research found a significant decrease of 13% in the amount Greek households spend for daily purchases at the country’s supermarkets. Greek households spend 40 euro less per month  in the supermarkets. the decline has been recorder also in the turnovers of the country’s supermarkets: -10 percent in January 2017, a slight increase of +2.9 percent in February, but a serious decline of -15 percent in March.

Last month, I wrote about my surprise to see the price for one liter oil average olive oil to have skyrocketed to €7.10 from 6.40 – if I am not wrong previously – and even sharp below five euros in the period before that.

I hope, we will not be forced to use olive oil like Channel No 5 – a drop behind the ear.

This Greek Nightmare has no end.

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