Korea’s Consumer Price Trends – October 2023

The Korean Statistical Office (통계청) has released the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for October 2023, reflecting a 0.3% increase compared to the previous month and a 3.8% increase from the same period last year.

Key Highlights:

  • Monthly Change: The CPI rose by 0.3% month-on-month. While electricity, gas, and water showed no change, industrial products and services saw an increase, offsetting a decline in agricultural and fisheries products.
  • Yearly Change: On a yearly basis, the overall CPI increased by 3.8%. All major components, including services, industrial products, agricultural and fisheries products, as well as electricity, gas, and water, contributed to this rise.
  • Core Inflation: Excluding agricultural and petroleum products, the CPI rose by 0.4% compared to the previous month and 3.6% compared to the same period last year.
  • Living Expenses: The cost of living, represented by the Living Cost Index, increased by 0.4% compared to the previous month and 4.6% compared to the same period last year. Food prices rose by 5.8% year-on-year, while non-food items increased by 3.8%.
  • Fresh Food Index: Despite a 1.1% month-on-month decrease, the Fresh Food Index showed a significant yearly increase of 12.1%. Fresh fruits surged by 26.2%, fresh vegetables by 5.4%, and fresh seafood by 2.8% compared to the same period last year.