May 2 Argentina will begin publishing a
countrywide consumer price index in July, government statistics
agency Indec said on Tuesday, the latest step in its efforts to
restore trust after allegations of data manipulation under the
The inflation index will cover all 23 Argentine provinces
and the autonomous city of Buenos Aires, and will break out
inflation levels in six regions, Indec said in a statement. The
first report will be published on July 11, and the agency will
give details on its methodology on May 18.
After taking office in December 2015, center-right President
Mauricio Macri ordered an overhaul of Indec, which was widely
accused of publishing unrealistically low inflation data under
his predecessor, populist President Cristina Fernandez.
That was seen as key to Macri's efforts to tame rampant
inflation, attract investment and restore growth. Indec director
Jorge Todesca, who was threatened with fines by the prior
government for publishing his own inflation data, fired 30 of 40
section directors in his first two months as part of the revamp.
In June, the agency began publishing inflation data for the
greater Buenos Aires area, which the central bank has used as a
benchmark for its monetary policy. The central bank is targeting
inflation between 12 and 17 percent this year, though private
economists see it exceeding 20 percent.
The International Monetary Fund recognized Argentina's
efforts to restore credibility to its official statistics when
it lifted its censure of Indec last November. The censure had
put Argentina at risk of official sanctions that could have
barred it from accessing financing.
(Reporting by Luc Cohen; Editing by Leslie Adler)