Russian inflation rises to 17.83% in April, highest since early 2002

US economic outlook weakens, inflation likely to persist

Inflation in Russia has accelerated sharply after Russia began what it calls “a special military operation” in Ukraine on Feb. 24.

Consumer inflation in Russia sped up in April to 17.83% in year-based on year conditions, its most elevated level since January 2002, data showed on Friday, as it got a lift from the unstable rouble and extraordinary western sanctions that disturbed logistics chains. However, monthly inflation eased back to 1.56% in April from 7.61% in March when it arranged the greatest month-on-month increment since January 1999, data from the federal statistics service Rosstat showed.

The fall in the rouble to record lows in March boosted demand for a wide range of goods from food staples to cars on expectations that prices will rise even more. The rouble has recovered since and firmed to a near five-year high against the euro on Friday.

High inflation has been the key concern among households for years as it dents living standards, a fall which this year will be aggravated by a steep economic contraction.

The central bank targets inflation at 4% but expects it to reach 18-23% this year. But it has already cut its key rate to 14% after an emergency rate hike to 20% in late February and said it saw room for more monetary easing to help the economy.

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