Saudi Arabia’s consumer price index (CPI) rose by 1.60% year-on-year (YoY) in March 2024.

The increase in CPI was driven by an 8.80% YoY surge in housing, water, electricity, gas, and other fuels, along with a 0.90% YoY uptick in food and beverage prices, according to data released by the General Authority for Statistics (GAS).

However, transportation prices dropped by 1.80% YoY, and personal goods and services saw a 1.10% YoY decrease.

Notably, housing rents spiked by 10.50% YoY, primarily due to a 9.70% increase in villa rents, significantly impacting the annual inflation rate.

Food and beverage prices rose by 0.90% YoY, led by a 6.80% increase in vegetable prices. Additionally, prices in the restaurants and hotels category climbed by 2.40%, while recreation and culture saw a 0.70% rise, driven by a 5.10% increase in holiday and tourism prices.

Conversely, prices for furnishing and home equipment dropped by 3.20% YoY, and clothing and footwear prices decreased by 4%. Transportation prices also fell by 1.80%.

Monthly Inflation

Month-on-month (MoM), Saudi Arabia’s CPI declined by 0.10% compared to February 2024. This was primarily due to a 0.70% MoM decrease in the food and beverage sector, driven by a 0.60% decline in meat and poultry prices.

Moreover, transportation, furnishing and home equipment, recreation and culture, communications, and tobacco categories all experienced MoM declines. However, housing, water, electricity, gas, and other fuel prices increased by 0.70% MoM, along with personal goods and services by 0.30%, and clothing and footwear by 0.10%.

Despite these fluctuations, prices for services such as education, restaurants and hotels, and health remained relatively stable in March 2024.

It is worth highlighting that the headline seasonally adjusted Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) of Saudi Arabia declined from 57.20 in February to 57 in March 2024.

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