South Africa's producer price index sprinted on an annual basis to 16.2% in June, its highest level in almost 14 years, from 14.7% in May. Roaring oil and food prices remain the main drivers, cementing the view that more interest rate hikes are in the pipeline.
The data, released on Thursday by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA), clearly underscores the inflationary vice that has the South African -- and for that matter the global -- economy firmly in its grip. Consumers will ultimately pay even higher prices for a range of goods as a result.
At 16.2% year on year, domestic PPI is now at its highest level since August 2008, when it reached 19.1%. CPI is at a 13-year high, though at a more subdued 7.4%.
The South African Reserve Bank will see this data as further evidence that its 75-basis point rate hike last week -- which took the cumulative rise in rates since November last year to 200 basis points and the prime rate to 9% -- was not excessive. Critics would counter that inflation is being fanned by external factors, including Russia's invasion of Ukraine, and that higher rates will do little to contain price pressures...