France: Harmonized inflation eases in August
Consumer prices increased 0.37% from the previous month in August, picking up from July’s 0.28% increase. Looking at the details of the release, food and non-alcoholic beverages prices rose at a quicker pace in August compared to the previous month and price pressures for manufactured products increased.
Harmonized inflation came in at 6.5% in August, which was down from July’s 6.8%. August’s figure marked the weakest inflation rate since May. Annual average harmonized inflation rose to 4.7% in August (July: 4.4%). Finally, consumer price inflation fell to 5.8% in August, from the previous month’s 6.1%.
Commenting on the outlook, Charlotte de Montpellier, Senior Economist at ING, noted:
“Looking ahead, the question is how the recent high energy prices will affect consumer price inflation. The “tariff shield” put in place by the government on gas and electricity prices means that household energy bills are not impacted by recent price developments in the markets. However, the current mechanism is supposed to end at the end of 2022. Although the government wants to reintroduce consumer protection in 2023, the mechanism could evolve and lead to price increases in household energy bills, although these would probably be smaller than the increases observed in the markets. This would result in keeping overall inflation high in 2023.