Turkey’s inflation spike is here. And it is looking worse than expected.
Data today shows October inflation jumping 3.27 percent, well above forecast and the highest in nine years. Compare that to 1.8 percent at this time last year. Annual inflation is now running at 7.7 percent and makes the central bank’s end-year forecast of 8.3 percent look optimistic –most analysts reckon it will be closer to 10 percent. Inflation has in fact been rising steadily in recent months — a consequence of the runaway credit boom of the past year and a policy experiment which saw the central bank cutting interest rates in the face of an overheating economy and raising banks’ reserve ratios instead. Add in the pass-through from the lira’s big depreciation since August and a jump in inflation is hardly surprising. The central bank has of late expressed some concern about inflation and used this to justify its actions to prop up the lira.