Malaysia Inflation Likely Eased in July -- WSJ Poll

By Yantoultra Ngui Features Dow Jones Newswires

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia--Malaysia's inflation likely eased further in July, potentially marking the fourth month of moderation from an eight-year high of 5.1% in March.

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The consumer-price index, the country's main inflation gauge, is expected to have risen 3.4% in July from a year earlier, according to the median forecast of eight economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal on Monday, as domestic fuel prices moderate. The CPI grew 3.6% in June from the previous year.

"There was a slight decline in average fuel prices...and this could help reduce the inflationary pressures during July," Dr. Mohd Afzanizam Abdul Rashid, chief economist at Bank Islam Malaysia, said on Monday.

Nonetheless, he said the expected inflation rate is deemed to be on the high side, considering the average inflation rate between 1990 until 2016 is around 2.8%.

Bank Negara Malaysia on Friday said that headline inflation, which softened to 4% in the second quarter on lower fuel prices, from 4.3% in the preceding quarter, is expected to moderate further in the second half of this year assuming lower global oil prices.

The central bank also announced on Friday a better-than-expected economic growth of 5.8% for the second quarter ended June--a pace last seen in the first quarter of 2015--powered by growth in the private and public sectors, and a broad-based expansion in exports of manufactured goods and commodities.

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The official July inflation data is due Wednesday at 0400 GMT.

Write to Yantoultra Ngui at yantoultra.ngui@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

August 21, 2017 06:16 ET (10:16 GMT)