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France Inflation March 2023

France: Harmonized inflation drops to six-month low in March

Harmonized inflation dropped to 6.7% in March from February’s 7.3%. March’s figure marked the weakest inflation rate since September 2022. The result was driven by moderating price pressures for transportation and housing and utilities. That said, food price growth continued to accelerate.

Annual average harmonized inflation rose to 6.6% in March (February: 6.5%). Meanwhile, consumer price inflation fell to 5.7% in March, from the previous month’s 6.3%.

Lastly, harmonized consumer prices increased 1.02% over the previous month in March, moderating from the 1.13% rise logged in February.

Harmonized inflation in 2023 likely peaked in February. From now on, it should slowly ease amid a tougher base effect and lower producer price inflation. However, it should remain sticky due to increasing core inflation: In March, core inflation reached 6.2% from 6.1% in February.

As such, our consensus forecasts that France’s inflation should soften at the end of 2023 from current levels, but remain above the main European neighbors.

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