December 17, 2018 / 10:17 AM / a year ago

Euro zone Nov inflation revised down to ECB target, Oct trade surplus falls

    BRUSSELS, Dec 17 (Reuters) - Euro zone headline inflation
was at the European Central Bank target in November and the
inflation measure crucial for monetary policy decisions eased
again after rising the previous month, revised data showed on
    The European Union's statistics office said consumer prices
in the 19 countries sharing the euro eased 0.2 percent
month-on-month in November for a 1.9 percent year-on-year
increase, revised down from the previously reported 2.0 percent.
    The ECB wants to keep headline inflation below, but close to
2 percent over the medium term. 
    It said on Dec. 13 it would end its 2.6 trillion euro 
($2.95 trillion) government bond purchase scheme started four
years ago to boost the economy but would keep re-investing cash
from maturing bonds for a long time after its first interest
rate hike.
    Eurostat said that inflation excluding energy and
unprocessed food -- a measure the ECB calls core inflation and
looks closely at in policy decisions -- eased 0.2 percent
month-on-month for a year-on-year 1.1 percent rise against 1.2
percent in October.
    Separately, Eurostat said the euro zone's trade surplus with
the rest of the world was 1.4 billion euros in October, down
from 17.8 billion a year earlier as exports jumped 11.4 percent
year-on-year in October while imports surged 14.8 percent. 
    The change was mainly due to a higher trade deficit in
energy, of which the European Union is a net importer,
increasing the EU's trade deficit with its main energy suppliers
Russia and Norway.
($1 = 0.8818 euros)

 (Reporting by Jan Strupczewski, editing by Robin Emmott)
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