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Eurozone inflation data add to expectations of ECB action

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By Euronews
Eurozone inflation data add to expectations of ECB action

New inflation figures for the eurozone add further weight to those arguing for more stimulus measures.

Core inflation surprisingly slowed in November, easing to 0.9 percent from 1.0 percent. It had been expected to stay the same.

Core inflation is watched closely as it does not take account of the sharp fall in oil prices.

Headline inflation did hold steady at an annual rate of 0.1 percent – below expectations of 0.2 percent.

Both figures are way below the European Central Bank’s target rate of two percent.

Prices were kept down by low energy prices, despite a rise in the cost of unprocessed food.

“November’s weaker-than-expected euro-zone consumer prices figures give a final green light for the ECB to both increase the pace of its asset purchases and cut its deposit rate at tomorrow’s policy meeting,” Capital Economics economist Jonathan Loynes said.

A range of options are on the table. Analysts expect the bank to cut its deposit rate still further from -0.2 percent to -0.3 percent, extend its asset purchase programme and lift monthly purchases of mainly government bonds to 75 billion euros.