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IPCA-15 changes 0.02% in March

March 25, 2020 09h00 AM | Last Updated: March 25, 2020 11h27 AM

The Extended National Consumer Price Index 15 (IPCA-15) was 0.02% in March, the lowest result for March since the beginning of the Plano Real (1994) and was 0.20 percentage points (pp) below the February rate (0.22%). In 2019, the rate for March had been 0.54%. The index accumulated an increase of 0.95% in the year and, in the last 12 months, of 3.67%. Of the nine groups of products and services surveyed, four underwent deflation in March. The IPCA-E, which is the quarterly cumulative IPCA-15, was 0.95%, below the rate of 1.18% registered in March 2019.

Period RATE
March 2020 0.02%
February 2020 0.22%
March 2019 0.54%
Cumulative in the year 0.95%
Cumulative in the last 12 months 3.67%

Transportation (-0.80%) was the group responsible for the largest negative contribution to the IPCA-15 of March, with -0.17 pp. In addition, the Housing group (-0.28%) also registered a negative change, contributing with - 0.04 pp. Among the highs, the Health and Personal Care group showed the greatest change (0.84%) and the greatest positive impact (0.11 pp) in the month's index. Also noteworthy are the groups Food and beverage (0.35% and 0.07 pp) and Education (0.61% and 0.04 pp). The other groups were between -0.22% in Wearing apparel and 0.33% in Communication.

IPCA-15 and IPCA-E - Change and impact in the groups
Group Monthly Change (%) Impact Cumulative Change (%)
January February March March Quarter 12 months
General Index  0.71 0.22 0.02 0.02 0.95 3.67
Fodd and beverage 1.83 -0.10 0.35 0.07 2.08 4.32
Housing -0.14 0.07 -0.28 -0.04 -0.35 3.53
Household articles -0.01 0.17 -0.05 0.00 0.11 -0.58
Wearing apparel 0.10 -0.83 -0.22 -0.01 -0.95 1.31
Transportation 0.92 0.20 -0.80 -0.17 0.32 2.97
Health and personal care 0.35 -0.29 0.84 0.11 0.90 5.11
Personal expenses 0.47 0.31 0.03 0.00 0.80 4.42
Education 0.23 3.61 0,61 0,04 4.48 5.10
Communication 0.02 0.02 0.33 0.02 0.37 1.44
Source: IBGE, Diretoria de Pesquisas, Coordenação de Índices de Preços, Sistema Nacional de Índices de Preços ao Consumidor.

The drop in the Transportation group (-0.80%) was mainly due to airfares (-16.88%), which had a drop in prices for the third consecutive month (-6.45% in January and -6.68 % in February). Fuels, which had increased by 0.49% in February, registered a change of -1.19% in March, with decreases in gasoline (-1.18%), ethanol (-1.06%), diesel oil (-1.95%) and vehicular gas (-0.89%). As of March 13, the reduction announced by Petrobras, in refineries, is worth 9.50% in gasoline prices and 6.50% in diesel prices.

Also in Transportation, the highlights were the adjustments in intercity bus tickets (1.26%) in the following areas: Rio de Janeiro (4.80%) - average adjustment of 4.74%, as of February 17; Salvador (1.50%) - adjustments between 0.60% and 1.20% in the ticket value, as of February 7; São Paulo (1.55%) - adjustments ranging between 4.85% and 6.47% on tickets, in effect since January 26.

The change in the urban bus sub-item (0.06%), in turn, is due to the 5.00% adjustment in ticket prices in Salvador (0.75%), effective as of March 12. The result of the sub-item train (0.49%) is a consequence of the 2.17% adjustment in tickets in Rio de Janeiro (1.29%), in force since February 2.

In Housing (-0.28%), the decrease is mainly due to the item electricity (-1.30%). In March, the green tariff flag remains in force, which means no additional charge on the electricity bill. There was an increase in the tariffs of two energy concessionaires in Rio de Janeiro (-0.99%), as of March 15. The areas showed changes ranging from the 3.50% drop in Goiânia, where there was a reduction in PIS/COFINS and the contribution of public lighting, up to the 0.83% increase in Fortaleza.

The positive change in the piped gas item (0.06%) is a consequence of the 5.26% increase in Curitiba, due to the adjustment as of February 3, which had not been due in the previous month's IPCA-15. In Rio de Janeiro (-0.74%) and São Paulo (-0.40%), there were tariff reductions. In the first case, the reduction was -1.20%, valid as of February 1, and in the second case, the adjustment was -0.85%, effective as of March 2.

Among the highs, the major positive contribution (0.11 p.p.) came from the Health and Personal Care group (0.84%), reflecting highs in the items of personal hygiene (2.36% and 0.09 pp). Perfumes and skin products rose 5.10% and 4.37%, respectively. The health plan item changed 0.60% and contributed with 0.02 pp to the IPCA-15 of March.

The Food and Beverage group (0.35%) also increased in March, after falling 0.10% in the previous month. Food at home, which had fallen in February (-0.32%), rose 0.49% in March, influenced by the increases in carrots (23.92%), hen eggs (5.10%), tomatoes (4.93%) and long-life milk (1.37%). In addition, meat (-1.81%) showed a less intense fall compared to February (-5.04%).

With regard to food away from home (0.03%), there was a slowdown in comparison with the previous month (0.38%). While snacks increased by 0.39%, the meal fell by 0.08%, after an increase of 0.66% in the IPCA-15 of February.

Five of the eleven surveyed regions underwent deflation in March. As shown in the table below, the lowest index was registered in the municipality of Goiânia (-0.50%), influenced by the decreases in electricity (-3.50%) and gasoline (-3.11%). The highest index was registered in the metropolitan area of Fortaleza (0.44%), due to the increase of 2.33% in personal hygiene items and 24.57% in tomato prices.

For the IPCA-15 calculation, prices were collected from February 12 to March 16, 2020 (reference) and compared with those in effect from January 15 to February 11 (base). The indicator refers to families with an income of 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, as well as Brasília and Goiânia. The methodology used is the same as that of the IPCA, the difference lies in the period of price collection and geographic coverage.