South Korea's consumer prices advanced at a faster pace than the prior month, but the headline inflation stayed around 1 percent for 17 straight months, a government report showed Tuesday. Consumer prices increased 1.3 percent in March from a year earlier after rising 1 percent in the previous month, according to Statistics Korea. The consumer price inflation rebounded first in four months after falling from 1.2 percent last November to 1 percent in February this year. The March figure was the highest since 1.5 percent tallied last August. The higher inflation was attributable to the lower base effect caused by the government's policy to offer subsidies for childcare and preschool tuition. The offering of such subsidies lowered the headline inflation over the past year, but the lower figure in the same month of last year led to the relatively higher inflation this year. Core consumer prices, which exclude agricultural and oil products, climbed 2.1 percent on year in March, higher than a 1.7- percent gain in February.