Italy: Inflation eases further in March
March 31, 2014
According to preliminary data for March, consumer prices rose 0.1% over the previous month. The reading met market expectations but contrasted the 0.1% fall recorded in February. The increase was driven by higher prices for transport as well as for services related to recreation, repairs and personal care. Annual inflation inched down from 0.5% in February to 0.4% in March, marking the lowest inflation rate since October 2009.
The core inflation index, which excludes more volatile categories such as unprocessed food and energy, rose from a flat reading in February to 0.2% in March. Annual core inflation inched down from 1.0% in February to 0.9% in March. Finally, annual HICP inflation averaged 0.9% in March, which was below the 1.0% recorded in February.
FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect inflation to average 1.2% in 2014, which is unchanged from the previous month's projection. For 2015, panelists expect inflation to average 1.3%.
Author: Dirina Mançellari, Senior Economist