France: Inflation inches up in December
January 13, 2011
Consumer prices rose 0.5% in December, which was above the 0.1% increase recorded in November. As a result, annual inflation rose from 1.6% the previous month to 1.8%, marking the first increase after three months during which annual inflation remained stable at 1.6%. Moreover, the reading represented the highest annual inflation rate since October 2008. According to the National Statistical Institute (INSEE), the December increase reflected higher energy prices, which rose 1.9% month-on-month (November: +0.9% mom), driven in particular by the 3.2% increase in the price of oil products. The core inflation index, which excludes more volatile categories such as oil, fruits and vegetables, rose 0.1% in December, contrasting the 0.1% drop in November. However, annual core inflation remained unchanged at November's 0.7%. In addition, annual average harmonised inflation (HICP) also closed the year unchanged from November's 1.7%.