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The world is still dealing with excessive inflation.

The war between Russia and Ukraine has wreaked havoc on commodity and energy prices, and countries all over the world are grappling with rising inflation that has reached historic levels.

The international economy was supposed to rebound swiftly after a difficult two years owing to the coronavirus pandemic, but the conflict created additional issues for global markets.

The battle, which started on February 24, has caused huge price hikes in commodities like wheat, corn, and sunflower seed oil.

Food prices jumped 29.8% year over year in April, according to figures from the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization, with increases of 46.4 percent for vegetable oils, 34.3 percent for grains, 23.5 percent for dairy, and 21.8 percent for sugar, and 16.9 percent for meat.

Wheat prices per ton, which were around $350 before the war, soared to $500 when Russia’s military action began, and are now hovering around $400-$450.

Brent crude oil was around $93 per barrel in January, but it surpassed $100 after the war began in February and hit a record high of $110 in March. It was roughly $64.50 in February 2021 and $69.50 in May 2021, with a current price of around $106.

Increases in price

Annual inflation in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) region was 8.8% in March, the highest level since October 1988, whereas it was 2.4 percent in March 2021.

Around a sixth of OECD countries had double-digit inflation in March, with Turkiye having the highest rate at 61.1 percent.

In March, year-on-year energy price inflation in the region jumped to 33.7 percent, up from 26.6 percent in February.

Inflation in the G20 region jumped to 7.9% in March from 6.8% in February 2022.

After registering the highest 12-month gain in March since December 1981, the US annual inflation rate hit 8.3% in April.

In April, China’s annual inflation rate increased to 2.1 percent from 1.5 percent in March.

In March, the annual inflation rate in Canada reached 6.7 percent, the highest level in 31 years.

In April, the Netherlands had a double-digit inflation rate of 11.2 percent.

In the first quarter of this year, Australia’s inflation rate touched a 20-year high of 5.1 percent.

In March, Japan’s inflation rate reached a 26-month high of 0.8 percent.

In April, Turkiye’s annual inflation rate reached 69.97 percent.

Markets in Europe

In April, annual inflation in the eurozone reached 7.5 percent, up from 7.4 percent in March and 1.6 percent in April 2021.

In April, energy was the largest contributor to price rises, followed by food-alcohol-tobacco and non-energy industrial goods and services.

In April, Germany’s annual inflation rate was 7.4%, an all-time high for the second month in a row.

In April, the annual inflation rate in France was 5.4 percent, but energy costs jumped 26.6 percent year over year.

In March, annual consumer inflation in the United Kingdom reached a new high of 7%.

In April, prices in Denmark rose by 6.7 percent year on year, the largest increase since 1984.

Annual inflation in Greece increased to 10.2 percent in April, up from 8.9 percent the previous month, marking the first time the country has reached double digits in 27 years.

In April, the rate in Portugal hit 7.2 percent, the highest since March 1993, 6.2 percent in Italy, and 8.3 percent in Spain.

Measures

Meanwhile, governments all over the world attempted to lower prices by taking various actions.

Inflation was above 5% in more than half of the 40 nations categorized as advanced economies, according to the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) World Economic Outlook report, the highest level in more than 20 years.

Inflation in developing economies is predicted to hit 8.7% this year, according to an IMF report released in April.

At its two-day meeting last week, the US Federal Reserve raised its policy rate by 50 basis points.

The Fed’s aggressive rate boost, the steepest since 2000, pushed the benchmark rate to a range of 0.75 percent to 1%.

Following another boost of 25 basis points in March, the Bank of England hiked interest rates by 25 basis points to 1%, the highest level since 2009.

At its April meeting, the European Central Bank (ECB) left its key interest rates steady.

Joachim Nagel, the governor of Germany’s central bank, recently advocated for action to combat growing inflation in the eurozone.

If the data points to a rate hike in June, Nagel said he will support for a first step toward normalizing ECB interest rates in July.

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