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Eurozone inflation continued to fall in February to 2.6%

2024-03-01T19:15:31.379Z

Highlights: Eurozone inflation continued to fall in February to 2.6%. Eurostat data confirm the downward trend in inflationary pressure in the euro zone. The European Central Bank (ECB) remains cautious and does not plan to lower interest rates for fear of a “hasty” decision before the ratify the sustained fall in prices. With 2.9% inflation according to the community agency, Spain was in the intermediate inflation zone of the countries of the single currency in the month just ended.


Eurostat data confirm the downward trend in inflationary pressure in the euro zone, although the European Central Bank (ECB) remains cautious and does not plan to lower interest rates for fear of a “hasty” decision before the ratify the sustained fall in prices


Inflation in the eurozone slightly accelerated its general downward trend in recent months in February, reaching 2.6% year-on-year, compared to 2.8% in January, according to preliminary estimates from the European statistical office of Eurostat. known this Friday, just a week before the new meeting of the European Central Bank (ECB) in which it must make a decision on interest rates.

With 2.9% inflation according to the community agency, Spain was in the intermediate inflation zone of the countries of the single currency in the month just ended.

In general, the increase in prices moderated in February in the main components of the shopping basket: energy prices continued to fall in the eurozone in the second month of the year, although more moderately: -3.7% , compared to -6.1% in January.

For its part, the increase in the price of fresh foods was much lower than in the previous month: 2.2%, compared to 7% in January.

The combined inflation of food, tobacco and alcohol registered the highest figure in the basket, with 4.0%, but still below the 5.6% that was reached in January.

Core inflation—without energy and food prices—also fell two tenths in February, to 3.1%, compared to the first month of the year.

The first estimates of inflation in February point to the trend marked since the end of last year throughout the eurozone: a downward path – interrupted only, briefly, by a slight rebound to 2.9% in December – that also remained in January, when inflation stood at 2.8% in the euro zone.

It also fits with the trend in Spain, where the National Institute of Statistics (INE) announced on Thursday the slowdown in inflation in February, which stood at 2.8% after the strong rebound in January.

Eurostat slightly increases this figure to 2.9%, which would place Spain somewhat above the eurozone average, although not among the countries with the greatest inflationary tension.

Among the large economies, Spanish inflation was below the French inflation (3.1%) in February, but above the German inflation (2.7%) and the Italian inflation, which, with 0.9%, is between the countries with the lowest inflationary pressure in the eurozone, only surpassed by Latvia (0.7%).

On the other side of the scale, the highest inflation rates in February were recorded in Croatia (4.8%), Estonia (4.4%) and Austria (4.2%).

The preliminary figures from Eurostat are known a few days before the new meeting of the Governing Council of the ECB, on March 7, at its headquarters in Frankfurt, in a meeting in which interest rates are not expected to fall until the downward trend in inflation is not confirmed.

“The last thing I would want is for us to make a hasty decision, for inflation to rise again and for us to have to take more measures,” the president of the ECB, Christine Lagarde, recently explained before the European Parliament, Efe recalls.

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Source: elparis

All business articles on 2024-03-01

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