UPDATE 1-Ethiopia's October inflation at 34.2% year-on-year, slows from September

(Updates with details, background)

Nov 11 (Reuters) - Ethiopia’s inflation slowed down slightly in October to 34.2% year-on-year from the previous month’s 34.8%, the statistics office said on Thursday.

While food prices spiked 40.7% in October from a year earlier, they dipped by 1.3 percentage points from the previous month, the data showed.

Inflation data in Ethiopia is usually released in the first week of the month, but was delayed. The statistics office did not give a reason for the delay in their statement.

Conflict broke out a year ago in northern Ethiopia between the federal government and forces aligned with the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF).

The lack of commercial commodities in Tigray and in the neighbouring Amhara region, where fighting spread to in July, has led to increases in food prices in both regions, the United Nations said in a report last week.

In Tigray, those challenges are compounded by civil servants no longer receiving salaries and a halt in remittances, the report said.

The situation is also dire in other parts of Ethiopia, with much of broader East Africa suffering from drought.

Late on Wednesday, S&P lowered its Ethiopia ratings to ‘CCC’ from ‘CCC+,’ saying that political uncertainty and civil conflict were increasing the country’s default risk. (Reporting by Ayenat Mersie, editing by Andrei Khalip)