The composite producer and import price index rose a further 0.3 percent on the month in February. This lifted its yearly change from 1.8 percent to 2.3 percent, its first time above the 2 percent mark since the Great Recession.
The monthly headline advance reflected gains in both domestic producer prices (0.4 percent) and import charges (0.3 percent). Annual inflation for the former now stands at 1.2 percent, but it remained the latter, at now 4.5 percent, that provided most of the boost to the overall rate.
Still, with falling petrol prices weighing, the core index posted a sharper 0.5 percent monthly spurt which lifted the underlying annual rate by 0.6 percentage points to 1.5 percent, also a multi-year high. For the SNB, the pick-up here will be very welcome but it is still the case that too much of the acceleration is due to CHF weakness, and not to domestically generated pressures.