ESPACIO PUBLICITARIO
CARACAS, Friday February 08, 2013 | Update
 
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FOOD | Prices in January jumped 3.3%

Shortage soars 4.1% in January to 20.4%

The Central Bank of Venezuela reported that the inflation rate for foodstuffs advanced 5.3%

Scarcity in January moved up 25%, according to the Central Bank of Venezuela (File photo: M. Cifuentes)
ENDER MARCANO |  EL UNIVERSAL
Friday February 08, 2013  02:56 PM
The National Consumer Price Index (NCPI) in Venezuela climbed to 3.3% in January, the Central Bank of Venezuela (BCV) reported. While this means a drop compared with December 2012 (3.5%), inflation in January is the third highest rate since April 2010.

As a result of such price acceleration, annualized inflation leapt to 22.2%, the highest rate since last May, when it stood at 22.6%. Likewise, the index points to the fourth month in a row in terms of acceleration of the annualized inflation from 17.9% in October 2012.

A breakdown of the items shows a 5.3% hike. It is worth mentioning that food and non-alcoholic beverages hold the largest share as part of the NCPI.

The item of restaurants and hotels ranked second at 4.2%, followed by health at 3.1% and entertainment and culture at 2.6%.

Soaring scarcity; diving diversity

The acceleration in the price index in January came together with increasing shortage, based on the related index prepared by the BCV for Caracas Metropolitan Area.

According to the official information, the shortage index climbed to 20.4% last month, that is, one out of five products sought by users in the markets could not be found.
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Is protest over?

That political protest in Venezuela has lost momentum seems pretty obvious: people are no longer building barricades to block off streets near Plaza Francia in Altamira (eastern Caracas), an anti-government stronghold; no new images have been shown of brave and dashing protesters with bandanna-covered faces clashing with the National Guard in San Cristóbal, in the western state of Táchira; and those who dreamed of a horde of "Gochos" (Tachirans) descending  in an avalanche to stir up revolt in Caracas have been left with no option but to wake up to reality.

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