Eurozone inflation accelerates to 13-year highs – Economy

The consumer price index in the Eurozone advanced in September to 3.4%, a 13-year high, above the 3% recorded in August and economists’ forecasts, according to data published by the European statistics office Eurostat. In Portugal, the inflation rate stood at 1.3%, the second lowest in the region.

The annual inflation rate thus registered the fourth consecutive month of increases in the region and surpassed the estimates of economists consulted by the Bloomberg agency, who expected growth to 3.3%. In Portugal, the inflation rate remained at 1.3%, the second lowest in the region – only Malta (0.7%) registered a lower evolution.

The rise in the price index has been led by the reopening of the economy, after the periods of confinement imposed to contain the pandemic and the expectation of the European Central Bank (ECB) is that this is a temporary effect, with the level of inflation returning at normal values ​​in 2022.

“Our baseline scenario continues to expect inflation to remain below our medium-term target,” ECB President Christine Lagarde said in a debate with the European Parliament’s (EP) Economic Affairs committee in a reference to the new ECB’s objective of an annual inflation rate of 2%.

The ECB president explained that while she expects the rate to rise further this autumn, she still sees this increase as “largely temporary” and driven mainly by the rise in oil prices since last year, the end of the temporary VAT reduction. in Germany and the scarcity of materials and equipment that put pressure on costs.

The rise in energy prices in recent weeks has also put pressure on the rate of inflation. Energy prices rose 1.3% in September and soared more than 17% compared to last year.