France Inflation Rate Down to 1.0 Percent in February


In February 2013, the Consumer Price index slowed down, increasing by 1.0 percent in February after +1.2 percent in January and +1.3 percent in December 2012. The largest upward pressures on the change in the CPI of February came from seasonally upturns in service prices and, in addition, from new increases in petroleum product prices. The manufactured product prices and those of food slowed down in February 2013.

In February 2013, the energy prices rose again substantially (+2.4 percent year-on-year) as a consequence of a new increase in petroleum product prices in the wake of the upward trend in crude oil prices. Thus, liquid fuel prices went up by 2.8 percent month-on-month in February 2013 (-0.5 percent year-on-year) and those of fuels for transport rose by 2.6 percent (stable year-on-year). The electricity prices were unchanged in February (+5.9 percent year-on-year) while those of town gas, now monthly reviewed, decreased slightly in February (-0.5 percent; +6.1 percent year-on-year).

Food prices slowed down, the growth rate decreased to 1.7 percent after 2.1 percent in January and 2.3 percent in December. The fresh foodstuff prices were up by 0.4 percent in February (+5,6 percent year-on-year), due to the dynamism of the fresh fruit prices (+2.7 percent ; +11.5 percent year-on-year) while fresh vegetable prices went down by 0.5 percent in February and their year-on-year growth rate was reduced to +0.5 percent in February. The upward pressures came only from meat prices which remained dynamic (+0.3 percent in February 2013; +2.7 percent year-on-year) and from alcoholic beverages (+0.6 percent in February; +3.4 percent year-on-year). These price increases are directly connected with the increases of the excise duties from the 1st of January.
 
Prices of certain kind of services are always dynamic in February, linked with the winter holidays. In 2013, these ones were later and they contributed less than last year to the rise in prices of services in February this year. Thus, the holyday accommodation rates rebounded less this year in February (+17.2 percent month-on-month and +2.4 percent year-on-year). It was the same with the package travel prices (+6.5 percent in February 2013 after +9.8 percent in February 2012; +1.8 percent year-on-year) and with the restaurant and hotel tariffs (+1.0 percent after +1.6 percent in February 2012; + 2.1 percent year on year).
 
Core inflation indicator fell by 0.2 percent in February 2013 (+0.6 percent year-on-year, after +0.8 percent in January). The harmonized Index of Consumer Prices rose by 0.3 percent (+1.2 percent. year-on-year).
 

Insee | Nuno Fontes | nuno@tradingeconomics.com
3/13/2013 9:00:50 AM