WHILE inflation continues not to improve this year and has dropped for the third consecutive month, other areas monitored by the Slovak Statistics Office (ŠÚ) are showing improvement. The recent statistics show industrial and construction production to be in better shape than last year.

Annual inflation measured by national methodology and the harmonised index of consumer prices (HICP) dropped in April by 0.2 percent in a year-on-year comparison, the ŠÚ informed. The average annual inflation rate measured by the HICP stood at 0.7 percent in April.

Prices measured by the HICP in education increased by 4.7 percent y/y; alcoholic beverages and tobacco by 2.2 percent y/y; hotels, cafés and restaurants by 1.4 percent y/y; health and clothing and footwear by 1.1 percent y/y each; and recreation and culture by 0.8 percent y/y. On the other hand, they dropped in post and telecommunications by 1.4 percent y/y; transport by 1.3 percent y/y; housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels and furnishings, household equipment and routine home maintenance by 1 percent y/y each; and miscellaneous goods and services by 0.8 percent y/y.

In monthly terms, prices rose in clothing and footwear by 2.1 percent; recreation and culture and miscellaneous goods and services by 0.5 percent each; hotels, cafés and restaurants by 0.2 percent; and transport by 0.1 percent. The prices of housing, water, electricity, gas and other fuels, post and telecommunication and education stagnated. The prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages dropped by 0.8 percent; furnishings, household equipment and routine home maintenance by 0.4 percent; alcoholic beverages and tobacco by 0.3 percent; and health by 0.2 percent, the SITA newswire wrote.

The index of industrial production (IPP) rose by 5.9 percent y/y in March as a result of the increase in industrial manufacturing by 7.7 percent, and in mining and quarrying by 2.6 percent. On the other hand, production dropped by 5.2 percent in the supplies of electricity, gas, steam and cold air, according to the ŠÚ.

After seasonal adjustment, industrial production grew in monthly terms by 0.2 percent. During the first three months of the year the IPP grew by 9.2 percent y/y, with industrial manufacturing 11.5 percent higher than last year. Production was lower in supplies of electricity, gas, steam and cold air by 3 percent y/y and in mining and quarrying by 0.2 percent y/y.

Construction saw signs of improvement in March, with statistics showing a rise for the second time this year. Compared to March 2013, it grew by 0.1 percent to €282.7 million. After seasonal adjustment, construction production was lower by 1.4 percent than in February 2014.

During the first three months of 2013 the volume of construction production stood at €732.3 million, down by 0.2 percent y/y, according to the ŠÚ.