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Euro zone inflation inches up again in November
November 30, 2016 / 10:15 AM / a year ago

Euro zone inflation inches up again in November

BRUSSELS, Nov 30 (Reuters) - Euro zone inflation inched up another tenth of a percentage point in November as food and core inflation pushed higher, providing modest comfort for European Central Bank policymakers who meet next week.

The European Union’s statistics office Eurostat said consumer prices rose 0.6 percent year-on-year in November, picking up from 0.5 percent in October and 0.4 percent in September.

The increase was in line with the average expectation in a Reuters poll of 47 economists.

Energy prices were actually 1.1 percent lower in November than 12 months earlier, compared to 0.9 percent down in October.

Excluding the most volatile prices for unprocessed food and energy, inflation was 0.8 percent year-on-year, from 0.7 percent in October and the same as the level of the previous five months. The figure is the one the ECB uses as core inflation.

The European Central Bank wants a higher rate of overall inflation -- close to 2 percent over the medium term -- and has been buying euro zone government bonds to inject cash into the banking system and make banks lend to the real economy.

The ECB’s Governing Council meets next Thursday, Dec. 8, and is expected to extend its bond-buying beyond an initial target date in March.

Eurostat’s flash estimate for the month does not include a monthly calculation. (Reporting By Philip Blenkinsop; Editing by Alastair Macdonald)

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