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Philippine inflation at nine-year high, pressures central bank

Prices increased at 6.4% rate in August and wiped out benefits of a weak peso

A worker sorts grocery items at a supermarket in Las Pinas, Metro Manila, Philippines.   © Reuters

MANILA -- Inflation in the Philippines reached a fresh nine-year high in August, hitting a level that could pressure the country's central bank to further tighten monetary policy and hurt growth prospects for the rest of the year.

Inflation last month reached 6.4%, breaching the 6% level for the first time since March 2009. The uptick exceeded market expectations and the estimate of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas. Investors and the central bank had forecast 5.9% price growth.

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