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Turkey’s annual inflation surges to almost 70% in April

April's inflation rate marks Turkey’s highest in the past 16 months, driven primarily by price increases in education, restaurants and hotels, and transportation.
People walk at Kadikoy district in Istanbul on March 5, 2024. Turkey's annual inflation rose again in February, reaching 67.1 percent despite a string of interest rate hikes, official data showed on Monday. The Turkish central bank held its key interest rate at 45 percent last month, pausing after eight straight increases aimed at taming consumer prices that had remained stable at 64.9 percent in January.

ANKARA —  Turkey’s annual consumer inflation rate rose to 69.80% in April, according to official data published Friday.

Up from 43.68% in April 2023, the figure marks Turkey’s highest rate in the past 16 months, driven primarily by price increases in education, restaurants and hotels, and transportation, according to data released by the Turkish Statistical Institute, TurkStat. Monthly consumer prices jumped by 3.18% from last month.

The figure released today was slightly below the 70.3% forecast in a Reuters survey this week.

The Turkish lira tumbled slightly against the US dollar after the new figures were unveiled, trading at 32.38 to the greenback at 10:30 a.m. Istanbul time.

Meanwhile, annual producer price inflation stood at 55.66%, according to data also released on Friday.

Turkish Finance Minister Mehmet Simsek said the month-on-month increase was “in line with expectations.”

“After peaking in May, inflation will begin to decline sharply in line with our predictions,” he added on the social media platform X.

Turkey’s Central Bank is maintaining its ambitious projection of 36% inflation by the end of the year.

The figures are “signaling hopes of better trends to come,” Timothy Ash, an analyst at BlueBay Asset Management, said on X, adding that Turkey’s “return to orthodoxy begins to show effects.”

In a bid to tame the country’s breakneck inflation, the bank unleashed an aggressive run of interest rate hikes, gradually increasing the rate from 8.5% to 50% since June last year.

At a meeting earlier this month, the bank’s monetary committee decided to keep the rate steady, at 50%.

This story has been updated.