Canada’s inflation rate falls to 2.7 per cdent in April

Canada’s annual inflation rate fell to 2.7 per cent in April amid a broad-based deceleration in price growth, Statistics Canada reported May 21.

The agency says the slowdown from 2.9 per cent in March was led by food prices, services and durable goods.

The consumer price index report bears good news for the Bank of Canada, which has been looking for a sustained decline in inflation toward its two per cent target.

The latest inflation figures are expected to play a key role in the central bank’s interest rate decision scheduled for June 5 as it weighs recent economic data.

Grocery prices grew at a modest pace, rising 1.4 per cent from a year ago, the data showed.

Meanwhile, higher gasoline prices moderated the deceleration in inflation last month, with prices at the pump rising 6.1 per cent year-over-year.

Excluding gasoline, prices were up 2.5 per cent from a year ago.

The Bank of Canada’s core measures of inflation, which strip out volatile prices, also slowed last month and are all now below three per cent.

The central bank has signalled that it is inching closer to cutting interest rates but wants to see the slowdown in inflation sustained for longer.

Prior to Tuesday’s release, economists were split on whether the Bank of Canada could move to cut rates in June or July.

The latest inflation figures are expected to help solidify expectations as the next rate announcement nears.

The Bank of Canada’s key interest rate currently sits at five per cent, the highest it’s been since 2001.