Plunging Energy Prices Lead European Inflation Sharply Lower in November

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Sharply lower energy prices have resulted in a sharp decrease of European consumer prices. The headline annual inflation figure for the 15 Eurozone countries plunged from 3.2% in October to 2.1% in November, Eurostat reported. Transport fuels accounted for most of the improvement, registering a 4.9% MOM decline. Monthly inflation was -0.5% in November 2008.
Non-Euro members fare still worse.
EU3 annual inflation was 2.8% in November 2008, down from 3.7% in October. A year earlier the rate was 3.1%. Monthly inflation was -0.4% in November 2008.
East European countries are hit hardest. Relying on forex financing consumers are now stuck with higher installments for their Swiss Franc and Euro loans.
In November 2008, the lowest annual rates were observed in Germany and Portugal (both 1.4%), and France and the Netherlands (both 1.9%), and the highest in Latvia (11.6%), Lithuania (9.2%) and Bulgaria (8.8%).
Compared with October 2008, annual inflation fell in all Member States.
The lowest 12-month averages up to November 2008 were registered in the Netherlands (2.2%), Portugal (2.8%) and Germany (2.9%), and the highest in Latvia (15.6%), Bulgaria (12.3%) and Lithuania (11.1%).
In the Euro area
The main components with the highest annual rates in November 2008 were housing (4.5%), food (3.7%) and
alcohol & tobacco (3.5%.)
From all European countries Iceland recorded the highest inflation rate with an annual rate of 20%.
Find the complete table for all European countries here.
Eurostat now sports slightly easier access to information. For a long term inflation table click here. Eurostat is currently redesigning its website that will offer charts too. As of today the chart feature does not work, at least with a Mac and Safari browser.
As this slowdown in consumer price inflation is mostly based on plunging oil and gas prices whereas food is on the rise again, the HICP goods basket may not reflect current spending patterns of aging Europeans who are cutting back on more or less everything due to raising communal taxes and higher health spending.


Wikinvest Wire