Eurozone: Inflation falls in February
March 17, 2017
According to complete data released by Eurostat on 16 March, harmonized inflation came in at 1.1% in February, down from January’s 1.3% reading. The result was a notch below the preliminary estimate of 1.2% released on 28 February. As a result, inflation now sits further below the European Central Bank’s target rate of just under 2.0%. The moderation in price pressures was chiefly due to a smaller rise in food, alcohol and tobacco prices.
Annual average inflation inched down from January’s 1.5% to 1.4% in February. Meanwhile, core inflation was unchanged at January’s 1.2%. Harmonized consumer prices rose 0.2% from the previous month in February, contrasting the 0.9% decrease recorded in January.
Among the countries in the common-currency bloc, the Baltics saw the highest inflation, with Estonia and Lithuania recording the joint-highest rate of 3.2% in February. Meanwhile, Cyprus was the only country in the Eurozone to see harmonized consumer prices fall on an annual basis. Regarding the largest economies in the Eurozone, inflation fell in France (1.3%), Germany (1.2%) and Italy (0.5%) but rose in Spain (1.2%).
Eurozone Inflation Forecast
FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast participants see inflation in the Euro area averaging 1.5% in 2018, which is unchanged from last month’s forecast. For 2019, panelists expect inflation to average 1.6%.