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Euro zone inflation confirmed at 0.3% year/year in June

FILE PHOTO: An elderly woman wearing a face mask shops in a supermarket, after the federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia decided to make wearing protective masks obligatory in shops and public transportation to fight the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Bad Honnef near Bonn, Germany, April 27, 2020. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay/File Photo

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Euro zone consumer prices rose slightly in June, while core measures of inflation which exclude volatile components eased, the European Union statistics office Eurostat said on Friday, confirming its earlier estimates.

Eurostat said annual inflation in the 19 countries sharing the euro rose by 0.3% in June after a rise of just 0.1% in May, in line with the agency’s earlier estimates released on June 30.

Despite the uptick, inflation is still far below the European Central Bank’s target of below but close to 2% over the medium term.

Food, alcohol and tobacco prices went up in annual terms by 3.2%, while prices in the services sector, the largest in the bloc’s economy, rose by 1.2% in June. These increases offset a 9.3% fall in energy prices.

Excluding energy and unprocessed food prices - a measure the ECB calls core inflation and watches closely in policy decisions - prices grew 1.1% in annual terms, easing from 1.2% in May, Eurostat figures showed.

An even narrower core inflation measure, stripping out also alcohol and tobacco prices that many market economists look at, dipped to 0.8% year-on-year from 0.9% in May.

Both measures of core inflation confirmed Eurostat’s earlier estimates.

Month-on-month, euro zone inflation also rose 0.3% in June.

Reporting by Francesco Guarascio @fraguarascio; Editing by Hugh Lawson