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China February inflation jumps to 1.4%

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Beijing: China`s consumer inflation jumped to 1.4 percent in February, rebounding from a more-than-five-year low, official data showed Tuesday, easing concerns about deflation in the world`s second-largest economy.

The increase in the consumer price index (CPI) compared with a gain of 0.8 percent in January, according to National Bureau of Statistics figures.

Moderate inflation can be a boon to consumption as it encourages consumers to buy before prices go up, while falling prices encourage shoppers to delay purchases and companies to put off investment, both of which can hurt growth.

Separately, the producer price index (PPI) — a measure of costs for goods at the factory gate and a leading indicator of the trend for CPI — declined for the 36th straight month in February.

PPI fell 4.8 percent year-on-year, higher than the 4.3 percent decline recorded in January, and the worst result since October 2009.

The central People`s Bank of China cut interest rates for the second time in three months effective from March 1, citing “historically low inflation”, as the world`s second-largest economy grows at is slowest annual pace in nearly a quarter century.

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