May 9, 2019 / 3:25 PM / 10 days ago

UPDATE 1-Mexico inflation accelerates to 4-month high in April

(Adds details, context)

MEXICO CITY, May 9 (Reuters) - Mexican annual inflation accelerated to a four-month high in April, official data showed on Thursday, restricting the central bank’s room to cut interest rates to boost a sluggish economy.

Consumer prices in Latin America’s No.2 economy rose by 4.41 percent in the year through April, and climbed by 0.05 percent compared with March, the national statistics agency said.

The figures were in line with the median forecast of a Reuters poll of analysts published this week.

At the end of March, the Mexican central bank voted to hold its benchmark lending rate at 8.25 percent, which is the highest level since August 2008. The bank’s board is due to meet for its next monetary policy decision on Thursday next week.

Inflation had eased earlier in the year, fueling hopes that it could create room for the bank to begin cutting rates to help the Mexican economy, which contracted by 0.2 percent in the first quarter, according to preliminary data.

The core price index, which strips out some volatile food and energy costs, rose 0.46 percent month-on-month in April. (Reporting by Noe Torres and Dave Graham Editing by Bill Trott)

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