Led by gasoline, inflation preview stays at 0.48% in February

Section: Economic Statistics | Carmen Nery

February 24, 2021 09h00 AM | Last Updated: February 24, 2021 10h40 AM

Gasoline accounted for the main impact on the February index, which recorded its eighth risei a row  - Photo: Helena Pontes/IBGE News Agency

The Extended National Consumer Price Index 15 (IPCA-15), Brazil's official inflation preview, stayed at 0;48% in February, after a result of 0.78% in January. That is the highest result for a month of February since 2017, when the index was 0.54%. In 12 months, o IPCA-15 had a cumulative increase of 4.57%, above the 4.30% for the previous 12 month period. In February 2020, the rate was 0.22%. Figures have been released today (24) by the IBGE 

With an increase of 1.11%, transportation accelerated from January (when the index was 0.14%) and accounted for the main contribution (0.22 percentage points), led by the rise of fuels (3.34%). The man individual impact on the monthly index (0.17 p.p.) came from gasoline, which recorded a rise in prices for the eighth month in a row (3;52%). Diesel (2.89%), ethanol (2.36%) and vehicle gas (0.61%) also recorded increases.

Education (2.39%) recorded the biggest change and represented the second main impact - 0.15 p.p. on the February result. Such performance reflects annual price adjustments effected in the beginning of the school year and the interruption of discount policies by some teaching institutions in the course of 2020, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The negative contribution came from Housing (-0.74%), which had risen 1.44% in the previous month. The decrease was due to electricity fares (-4.24%) registered in IPCA-15 due to the change from a red tariff flag - level 2,  in December, to a yellow tariff flag, in January and February, considering the reference periods for IPCA-15. 

Another negative impact came from Food and beverages, which has decelerated since November and fell from 1.53% in January to 0.56% in February, with an impact of 0.12 p.p. That is a result of the fall of food prices such as those of potatoes (-5.44%), long life milk (-1;79%), soybean oil (-1.73%) and rice (-0.96%). 

Except for Goiânia (-0.03%), all the areas surveyed recorded positive changes in February. The main index was that of the metropolitan area of Fortaleza (0.95%), mainly due to rises in regular education courses (8.86%). The index in that municipality was significantly affected by decreases in electricity (-4.88%). 

For the IPCA-15 calculation, prices were collected between January 15 and February 11, 2021 (reference) and compared to those in effect between December 12 and January 14, 2021 (base). The indicator refers to families with income from 1 to 40 minimum wages and covers the Metropolitan Areas of Rio de Janeiro, Porto Alegre, Belo Horizonte, Recife, São Paulo, Belém, Fortaleza, Salvador and Curitiba, in addition to Brasília and the city ​​of Goiânia. The methodology used is the same as that of the IPCA, the difference lies in the period of price collection and in the geographic coverage.