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Inflation expected to peak in late Q3 or early Q4: finance minister

All News 16:38 July 25, 2022

SEOUL, July 25 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's consumer inflation is likely to peak late in the third quarter or early fourth quarter if there is no sharp hike in global oil and grain prices, Finance Minister Choo Kyung-ho said Monday.

Consumer prices may markedly stabilize starting in October if the harvest of farm products is not seriously hampered by typhoons after the Chuseok fall harvest holiday, set for Sept. 9-12, according to the minister.

"If oil prices show similar movements to current trends, consumer prices may peak no later than in October. ...Inflation is likely to reach its pinnacle late in the third quarter or early in the fourth quarter," Choo told reporters.

Consumer prices soared 6 percent in June from a year earlier, the fastest clip in nearly 24 years and acceleration from a 5.4 percent on-year spike in May.

The country's inflation is under upward pressure due mainly to soaring oil and commodity prices caused by the protracted war between Russia and Ukraine. A rebound in demand from the pandemic also pushed up inflation.

The government plans to roll out an additional measure to stabilize people's lives and curb inflation next month ahead of the Chuseok holiday.

Demand for vegetables, eggs and other foodstuff usually rises in South Korea ahead of the Lunar New Year holiday and the Chuseok fall harvest holiday as people prepare holiday meals for family gatherings.

In this file photo, people shop for groceries at a discount chain store in Seoul on July 4, 2022, amid high inflation. (Yonhap)

sooyeon@yna.co.kr
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