Canada's annual inflation rate fell by 0.2 percent in April, the first time it has hit negative territory since 2009, as the coronavirus pandemic slashed energy prices, Statistics Canada said on Wednesday.
Analysts had forecast a negative rate of 0.1 percent in April, down from 0.9 percent recorded in March. Excluding energy prices, annual inflation rose by 1.6 percent.
The last time Canada recorded a negative annual inflation rate was in September 2009, when prices fell by 0.9 percent.
Energy prices sank by 23.7 percent from April 2019. Gasoline prices plunged 39.3 percent, the largest year-over-year decline on record, on lower global demand for oil and a production war between Russia and Saudi Arabia.
CPI common, which the central bank says is the best gauge of the economy's underperformance, dipped to 1.6 percent from 1.7 percent. CPI median, which shows the median inflation rate across CPI components, stayed at 2.0 percent, while CPI trim, which excludes upside and downside outliers, was unchanged at 1.8 percent.