By Kwanwoo Jun

SEOUL--South Korea's headline consumer price index rose 1.3% on year in October--the fastest pace in eight months, with inflation accelerating faster than expected.

The October reading followed a 1.2% annual gain in the prior month, according to Seoul's statistical office. The latest figure--the highest since February--beat the median market forecast of a 1.1% increase for October.

Compared with the prior month, the index gained 1.1% in October after rising 0.6% in September. The market had forecast a 0.1% fall in October.

Core CPI, which strips out volatile energy and food prices, rose 1.5% on year in October, picking up from a 1.3% gain in September. The index gained 0.5% on month in October following a 0.1% rise in the prior month.

Inflation averaged a record low 0.7% in 2015. The Bank of Korea expects inflation to gradually accelerate on expected gains in oil prices to hit 1% this year, likely coming near its annual target of 2% next year.

Write to Kwanwoo Jun at

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 31, 2016 19:23 ET (23:23 GMT)

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