France: Inflation edges up in February
March 13, 2014
Consumer prices rose 0.6% over the previous month in February, which contrasted the 0.6% decrease recorded in January and came in a tad above the 0.5% increase the market had expected. As the National Statistics Institute (INSEE) reported, the rise in prices was broad-based, with manufactured products and tobacco registering the strongest increases. Annual inflation edged up from January's 0.7% to 0.9% in February. The core inflation index, which excludes more volatile items such as oil, fruit and vegetables, registered a 0.5% increase over the previous month, contrasting the 0.4% decrease tallied in January. Annual core inflation increased from 0.1% in January to 0.7% in February. Annual HICP inflation (based on the harmonized index of consumer prices) increased from January's 0.8% to 1.1% in February. Meanwhile, annual average HICP inflation was stable at January's 0.9%. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect HICP inflation to average 1.2% in 2014, which is unchanged from last month's forecast. For 2015, panelists project that inflation will inch up to 1.3%.