German Inflation Slows More Than Expected To 8.6%

Germany’s consumer price inflation slowed at a faster than expected pace in December as the rate of increase in energy prices slowed sharply after the government took relief measures to support households and businesses, preliminary data from the statistical office Destatis showed Tuesday.

The consumer price index rose 8.6 percent year-on-year following a 10.0 percent rise in November. Economists had expected headline inflation to slow to 9.1 percent.

Energy inflation sharply eased to 24.4 percent from 38.7 percent in the previous month.

The federal one-off payment in December to cover the monthly installment for gas and heat had a downward effect on prices, Destatis said. Germans had witnessed energy and food prices surge since the start of the war in Ukraine.

Food prices rose 20.7 percent annually after a 21.1 percent increase in November.

Services costs grew 3.9 percent after a 3.6 percent rise in the previous month. The rate of increase in rents was steady at 1.9 percent.

The CPI fell 0.8 percent from November, when it decreased 0.5 percent. Economists had predicted a 0.3 percent decline.

The harmonized index of consumer prices, or HICP, rose 9.6 percent year-on-year following an 11.3 percent increase in November. Economists had forecast 10.7 percent inflation.

The EU measure of inflation decreased 1.2 percent from the previous month, when it remained unchanged. Economists were looking for a 0.5 percent fall.

In 2022, the annual average CPI inflation was 7.9 percent and HICP inflation was 8.7 percent.

Destatis is set to release the final results for December CPI on January 17.

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