German Inflation To Remain Under Control In March

By Agence France-Presse Consumer price inflation in Germany, the euro zone's biggest economy, looked set to remain under control again in March, despite evidence that higher oil prices could be leading to upward pressure further up the inflation pipeline, official data showed on March 24. In the central state of Hesse, consumer price inflation slowed in March from February, data published by the regional statistics office showed. The cost of living in Hesse slipped by 0.1% in March from February and was only 0.8% higher than it had been in March 2002, the office said in a statement. In January, Hesse's consumer price index (CPI) had risen by 0.9% on a 12-month basis, and in February the headline rate of inflation stood at just 1.0%. Consumer price statistics from six regional states -- Baden-Wuerttemberg, Bavaria, Brandenburg, Hesse, North Rhine-Westphalia and Saxony -- are used to calculate preliminary inflation for the whole of Germany. Additionally, the German import price index rose by 0.6% in February on a 12-month basis after already rising by 0.5% in January. Excluding oil, German import prices would have actually fallen by 2.3% year-on-year in February, the statisticians calculated. Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2003

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