In its meeting of 4 April 2023, the Board of the National Bank of Romania decided: >>>to keep the monetary policy rate at 7.00 percent per annum; >>>to leave unchanged the lending (Lombard) facility rate at 8.00 percent per annum and the deposit facility rate at 6.00 percent per annum; >>>to keep the existing levels of minimum reserve requirement ratios on both leu- and foreign currency-denominated liabilities of credit institutions.
The annual inflation rate went down to 15.52 percent in February 2023, from 16.37 percent in December 2022, relatively in line with forecasts. The decrease was mainly driven by the sizeable drop in the dynamics of fuel and electricity prices, under the impact of significant base effects and the change made to the energy price capping and compensation scheme starting 1 January 2023.
At the same time, the annual adjusted CORE2 inflation slowed its rise somewhat more visibly than anticipated, to reach 15.0 percent in February, from 14.6 percent in December 2022, amid disinflationary base effects and falling prices of some commodities, especially agri-food items, as well as the downward adjustment of short-term inflation expectations. However, notable opposite influences continued to come from the gradual pass-through into consumer prices of increased costs of materials and wages, as well as from higher profit margins, in the context of the resilience of consumer demand, but also from the rise in the prices of some imported consumer goods.
The annual inflation rate calculated based on the Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (HICP – inflation indicator for EU Member States) went down to 13.4 percent in February 2023 from 14.1 percent in December 2022. The average annual CPI inflation rate and the average HICP inflation rate continued however to go up, reaching 14.9 percent and 13.0 percent respectively in February 2023 from 13.8 percent and 12.0 percent respectively in December 2022, but remained below the levels prevailing in the region and the Baltic countries.