According to Eurostat's advance data, 8.1% was the year-on-year euro zone inflation rate in May. This compares to 7.4% recorded in April and March. This is the largest price rise in the region over the history series. It also puts pressure on the European Central Bank (ECB), who will meet again next week.
According to the community statistic office, the 5th month price rises in the euro area in 2022 are due to the 39.2% increase in energy prices year-over-year. However, fresh food prices rose by 9.1% in May, one tenth less than in April.
Services were 3.5% more expensive than 3.3% the month before, and non-energy industrial products rose 4.2%. This is four tenths higher than April.
The interannual inflation rate for the euro area was 4.6% in May. This is a decrease of 4.1% from April. It also excludes the effect of alcohol and tobacco prices. Core inflation rates reached an all-time high at 3.8%, up from 3.5% in April.
The largest price increases in the eurozone were recorded in Estonia (20.1%), Lithuania (16.5%), and Latvia (16.4%), while Malta (5.6%), France (5.8%), and Finland (7.1%) had the weakest increases.
The record-breaking harmonized inflation in France of 5.8% was also recorded in Germany. Prices rose at an unprecedented pace in May with an 8.7% year-on-year increase in Germany, while harmonized inflation in Italy, third largest economy in euro, jumped to 7.3%.
The harmonized inflation rate in Spain was 8.5% in May, as compared to 8.3% April. This reduced the negative price differential relative to the average euro area price to four tenths.
The Governing Board of the European Central bank (ECB), is set to meet in the Netherlands on June 9 to discuss new monetary policy and to announce new macroeconomic projections.
French President Christine Lagarde and Philip Lane, the Chief Economist of the Central Bank, both supported a gradual normalization in the ECB's monetary policies, which included increases of 25 basic points in July meetings and September to reduce negative interest rates at the end.