Tag Archive: Euro area inflation

Why has euro inflation stayed so low?

Weak inflation data pose a conundrum, both in terms of the growth outlook and the ECB’s policy stance. We believe the ECB will stay on hold in 2020.The euro area headline flash Harmonised Index of Consumer Prices (HICP) dropped to 1.2% year on year in May from 1.7% the previous month.  Core inflation fell by 50bp to 0.8% y-o-y.

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Rebound in inflation data brings some relief to the ECB

Euro area flash HICP rose from 2.1% year on year (y-o-y) in September to 2.2% in October, in line with expectations and the highest level since December 2012. Crucially, core inflation (HICP excluding energy, food, alcohol and tobacco) rebounded from 0.9% to 1.1% in October.

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Euro area core inflation to rise again after Easter

The ECB’s Governing Council may have to wait a little longer to get a clearer view of where euro area core inflation is heading in the near term. The early timing of Easter this year has made travel-related services prices more volatile. Another reason is that an unexpected drop in core goods inflation has fuelled concerns over a potentially larger FX pass-through.

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ECB closer to the 2% inflation target than meets the eye

During an uneventful ECB press conference on Thursday, attention centred on the new staff projections. The headline projections were in line with expectations, albeit slightly higher on GDP growth and lower on inflation. The key word was “confidence” - in a strong expansion leading to a “significant” reduction in economic slack, as well as in the ECB’s capacity to meet its mandate.

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