Brussels (Brussels Morning) Eurozone recorded negative inflation on an annual level for the fourth consecutive month in November, reaching a four-year low, Reuters reported on Thursday.
Inflation in the 19 eurozone countries was down 0.3% on the annual level, the same as in September and October, while early estimates for December indicate the trend would continue into the current month.
Among individual euro area members, the highest inflation was registered in Poland (3.7%), Hungary (2.8%) and the Czech Republic (2.8%), while the lowest rates were recorded in Greece (-2.1%), Estonia (-1.2%), Slovenia and Cyprus (both -1.1%).
Energy pulling inflation down
The highest contributor to the annual inflation rate came from non-volatile priced goods, food, alcohol and tobacco, at 0.36 percentage points. Services contributed 0.25 percentage points, non-energy industrial goods reduced inflation by -0.07 percentage points, while energy prices contributed most to the drop in inflation, at -0.82 percentage points.
Within the euro area, food prices rose 1.5% on an annual level, while alcohol and tobacco prices rose 3.1%. Transport prices dropped 3.1% in November, year-to-year, while prices of communication services dropped 2.5%.
Core inflation stable but depressed
Core inflation, which excludes volatile energy and unprocessed foods prices, remained stable at 0.4% in November. On a monthly basis, harmonized prices dropped 0.33% in November, more than the reduction of 0.18% recorded in October.
Overall, euro area inflation remained far below the European Central Bank’s (ECB) target rate of near, but under 2.0%. Analysts believe that the current data indicates a long-term trend of depressed inflation, even though prices of goods and services popular with consumers during the coronavirus lockdowns might rise faster than the overall inflation level.