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French annual inflation to accelerate in March

Annual harmonized inflation in France is projected to accelerate by 1.7% in March after easing to 1.3% in February, provisional data from the National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies shows.

Month on month, harmonized inflation should rise by 1.1% in March after remaining stable in February.

The consumer price index is also expected to accelerate to 1.5% in March on an annual basis, after a 1.2% increase in the prior month. Tobacco prices are expected to increase by 16.6% in March year on year, compared to a 4.9% increase in the previous month.

Food prices are expected to increase by 1.5% in March as the fresh food category is projected to rebound to 2.8% price growth from a 1.3% decline in prices in February. Energy prices should increase less markedly as compared to the previous month, data showed.

On a monthly basis, consumer prices are estimated to edge up 1.0% in March, backed by a rebound in manufacturing product prices as winter sales ended and a sharp rise of tobacco prices. Energy prices are expected to fall in March as compared to the previous month, while services prices should accelerate.