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Hong Kong Inflation Eases To 3-Month Low

Hong Kong's consumer price inflation eased in April to its lowest level in three months, data from the Census and Statistics Department showed on Thursday.

The consumer price index rose 1.9 percent year-on-year in April, after a 2.3 percent increase in March. The inflation rate was the lowest since January, when it was 1.4 percent.

The smaller year-on-year rate of change in the Composite CPI in April was partly attributable to the higher base of comparison caused by the lowering of rates concession ceiling to HK$1,500, starting from April 2019, from $2,500 per quarter, the agency said.

Excluding the effects of all government's one-off relief measures, core inflation was 2.3 percent in April, after a 2.6 percent rise in the previous month. The slowing was mainly due to the smaller increases in private housing rentals and the decreases in the fuel cost variation charge for towngas.

"The underlying consumer price inflation rate went down to 2.3 percent in April, as price pressures on most major CPI components receded, offsetting the slight increase in food inflation," the government spokesman said.

"Looking ahead, inflationary pressure is likely to ease further in the near term." The government expect domestic cost pressures to continue to abate amid the severe economic recession and external price pressures to subside further in view of the plunging global demand and the recent strengthening of the Hong Kong dollar along with the US dollar.

"The Government will continue to monitor the inflation situation closely, particularly the impact on the lower-income people," the spokesman added.

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