Published : 2013-03-18 09:46
Updated : 2013-03-18 09:46
South Korea's producer prices grew at a faster pace in February than the previous month as oil prices picked up and the local currency depreciated to the dollar, the central bank said Monday.
The producer price index, a barometer of future consumer inflation, grew 0.7 percent in February from the previous month, after rising 0.2 percent on-month in January, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK).
The data marked the fastest gain since a 0.7 percent on-month gain in February 2012.
Last month, prices of Dubai crude, South Korea's benchmark, rose 2.9 percent from the previous month. The Korean currency depreciated an average of 2 percent against the greenback on-month in February. A weaker won makes prices of imported goods more expensive.
Compared with a year earlier, the producer prices fell 1.6 percent last month after declining an identical 1.6 percent in January.
The data came after the BOK froze the key interest rate at 2.75 percent for the fifth straight month on Thursday.
Korea's inflationary pressure is largely deemed benign as its consumer prices grew in the 1-percent range for the fourth straight month in February. The BOK aims to keep its inflation between 2.5 percent and 3.5 percent for 2013-2015. (Yonhap News)