Inflation sees a further significant decline and comes in slightly below the forecast in April 2023 

The CNB comments on the April 2023 inflation figures

According to figures released today, the price level increased by 12.7% year on year in April 2023. Inflation slowed markedly compared to March but remained well above the upper boundary of the tolerance band around the CNB’s target. Consumer prices adjusted for the first-round effects of changes to indirect taxes also rose by 12.7% year on year in April.

The April inflation figure was 0.5 percentage point lower than expected in the CNB’s spring forecast. This was due mainly to markedly slower annual food price inflation. Slightly lower-than-expected core inflation also contributed, albeit to a much lesser extent. Somewhat faster growth in administered prices and a smaller decline in fuel prices acted in the opposite direction. The overall deviation of inflation in April from the forecast should not be overestimated, since food prices are traditionally volatile and have mostly been higher than expected in recent times.

April 2023 year-on-year in %
MPR Spring 2023 actual value
CPI 13.2 12.7
Administered prices 25.9 26.4
First-round impacts of changes to indirect taxes 0.0 0.0
Adjusted for changes to indirect taxes    
Prices of food, beverages, tobacco 15.2 13.7
Core inflation 10.2 10.0
Fuel prices -15.9 -15.4
Monetary policy-relevant inflation 13.2 12.7

Core inflation eased further in April but remains elevated. Its longer-lasting decline reflects a gradual fading of foreign industrial producer price inflation and a cooling of domestic demand. It is thus causing a gradual correction of the until recently increasing profit margins of producers, retailers and service providers. Growth in prices of both goods and services slowed. The contribution of imputed rent is still shrinking rapidly, reflecting a slowdown in construction prices and stabilisation of new residential property prices due to higher interest rates. Growth in food prices is slowing thanks to falling global agricultural commodity prices and domestic agricultural producer prices amid a continuing deep decline in domestic real retail sales of food. Year-on-year administered price inflation remains strong but continued to slow slightly in April, among other things in the context of a cut in energy prices by some distributors to below the price cap. Fuel prices continue to decline sharply year on year. Besides oil market developments and an appreciating koruna, this was due mainly to last year’s high comparison base owing to the start of Russia’s aggression in Ukraine.

The observed price developments bear out the expectations of the spring forecast that inflation will continue to decline quickly during spring and summer. Year-on-year price growth will also slow dramatically in the months ahead. With each passing month, inflation will be more than one percentage point lower than in the previous month. Annual consumer price inflation will fall to single digits roughly in mid-2023. It will decline to the CNB’s 2% target over the monetary policy horizon, i.e. in 2024 Q2 and Q3.

Petr Král, Executive Director, Monetary Department