© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: People wearing face masks buy street food in Chinatown amid the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Bangkok, Thailand, January 6, 2021. REUTERS / Athit Perawongmetha / File Photo
BANGKOK (Reuters) – Thailand’s key inflation rate for September slowed from the previous month and was less than expected, data showed on Wednesday, but higher-than-target consumer prices bolstered expectations about further interest rate hikes.
According to Commerce Department data, the consumer price index (CPI) rose 6.41% in September from a year earlier, slowing from August’s 7.86% gain, helped by a decline prices of energy products.
This compares with a 6.60% increase forecast in a Reuters poll.
The core CPI rose 3.12% in September from a year ago, also below forecasts for a 3.20% increase.
Inflation is expected to continue to decline in the fourth quarter of this year, the ministry said in a statement.
Last week, the Bank of Thailand raised its key interest rate by a quarter to 1.00% to rein in inflation that has hit a multi-year high. Next, it will look at the exchange rate on November 30, when most economists expect a further gradual rally.