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By Sonia Gorodeisky

Inflation in Israel hit its highest rate in 10 years in 2021, and at 2.8% is edging closer to the 3% projection set by the Bank of Israel.

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The Central Bureau of Statistics said on Thursday that the Consumer Price Index rose by 0.3% in December 2021, exceeding analysts’ projections of 0.1-0.2%.

Overall, the CPI rose by 2.8% across 2021—within the central bank’s target range for inflation of between 1% and 3%. The CBS said that significant price hikes were noted in December in apparel (1.1%), housing costs (0.8%), furniture and household equipment (0.7%), and foods (0.5%).

The price of fresh produce dropped by 2.7%, as did personal expenditure for culture and entertainment (0.8%).

The CBS further noted a 1.4% rise in the Housing Price Index during October and November.

Overall, housing prices rose by 10.6% over the past 12 months, and by 18% since January 2019.

Preliminary data released by the Bank of Israel further said that Israelis took a record 116 billion shekels ($37 billion) in mortgages in 2021.

The figure is 50% higher than in 2020, financial daily Globes reported.

This article first appeared in Israel Hayom.

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