Philippines January inflation hits 4.2% yr/yr

MANILA, Feb 7 (Reuters): Philippine annual inflation accelerated faster than expected at 4.2% in January, the highest since January 2019, driven by the heavily-weighted food and non-alcoholic beverages index, the statistics agency has announced.

The headline figure beat the median forecast of 3.5% in a Reuters' poll and was outside the central bank's projected range of 3.3%-4.1% for the month.

Meanwhile, on Friday night, the Department of Health (DOH) of the Philippines reported on Saturday 1,941 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the South-East Asian country to 535,521.

The death toll climbed to 11,110 after 52 more patients died from the viral disease, the DOH said. It added that 234 more patients recovered, raising the total number of recoveries to 488,465.

The DOH said there is no community transmission of the more transmissible variant of the virus in the Philippines following the discovery of more cases in the country.

"We do not have strong evidence yet to conclude that there is community transmission," the DOH said in a statement on Saturday.

The Philippines on Friday confirmed an additional eight patients who had tested positive for the more contagious coronavirus variant first found in Britain, bringing the total of the new strain cases in the country to 25.

The Philippines, which has about 110 million population, has tested over 7.55 million people altogether. - Reuters
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