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Financial News: Eurozone Inflation Steady At 1%; Jobless Rate Lowest

Eurozone Inflation Steady At 1%; Jobless Rate Lowest Since 2008

08/30/2019 - 06:13:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - Eurozone consumer prices logged a steady growth in August, which was the lowest since late 2016, suggesting that the European Central Bank will resort to monetary easing as early as next month.

Another data showed that the unemployment rate remained unchanged at the lowest since mid-2008.

Flash inflation came in at 1 percent in August, the same rate as seen in July, Eurostat reported Friday. The 1 percent was the lowest since November 2016. Final data is due on September 18.

Inflation is below the European Central Bank's target of "below, but close to 2 percent."

Core inflation that excludes energy, food and tobacco, remained unchanged at 0.9 percent, while it was forecast to rise to 1 percent.

There is no sign of upward pressure ahead of September ECB meeting, Bert Colijn, an ING economist, said. As these are the final readings the bank will get before the important stimulus decision, there's good reason not to expect the ECB to hold back next month, the economist added.

The governing council of ECB is set to hold its next monetary policy meeting in Frankfurt on September 12.

The annual increase in food, alcohol and tobacco prices rose to 2.1 percent from 1.9 percent and the increase in services cost climbed to 1.3 percent from 1.2 percent.

At the same time, energy prices fell 0.6 percent, reversing a 0.5 percent rise and the growth in non-energy industrial goods prices remained unchanged at 0.4 percent.

The unemployment rate in the currency bloc held steady at 7.5 percent in July, Eurostat said. This was the lowest since July 2008.

The number of people out of work decreased by 16,000 from June. Eurostat estimated that 12.322 million people were unemployed in July, down by 898,000 from last year.

The youth unemployment rate was 15.6 percent in July versus 15.5 percent in June.

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