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Germany’s North Rhine-Westphalia Says Inflation Quickened

Inflation in the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia accelerated in August on higher energy costs.

The inflation rate quickened to 1.9 percent from 1.3 percent in July, the state’s statistics office in Dusseldorf said today. Economists forecast that Germany’s inflation rate, calculated using a harmonized European-Union method, will rise to 2 percent from 1.9 percent in July, the median of 22 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey shows. The Federal Statistics Office in Wiesbaden will release that report, based on data from six states, tomorrow.

Oil prices have surged about 25 percent since the end of June as storms in the Gulf of Mexico crimped output. The European Central Bank, which predicts that inflation will slow this year, is working on the details of a new asset-purchase program aimed at reducing bond yields in countries such as Spain and Italy.

“Higher oil prices are the main reason for inflation in Germany”, said Alexander Krueger, chief economist at Bankhaus Lampe KG in Dusseldorf. “Besides, I don’t see much upward pressure on prices in the months to come.”

In North Rhine-Westphalia, consumer prices rose 0.4 percent from a month earlier, the statistics office said. Heating oil prices gained 4.4 percent from July and were 13 percent higher than a year ago. The cost of fuel increased 5.6 percent in August from a month earlier and rose 12.1 percent compared with a year earlier.

In the euro area, economists predict inflation will accelerate to 2.5 percent in August from 2.4 percent in July, according to the median of 31 estimates in a separate Bloomberg News survey. Eurostat, the European Union’s statistics office, will publish that report on Aug. 31.

                         Monthly            Yearly
                         Change             Change

Saxony                   n/a (0.4%)         n/a (1.8%)
Hesse                    n/a (0.4%)         n/a (1.7%)
Bavaria                  n/a (0.4%)         n/a (2.2%)
Brandenburg              n/a (0.4%)         n/a (1.7%)
North Rhine-Westphalia  0.4% (0.4%)        1.9% (1.3%)
Baden-Wuerttemberg       n/a (0.4%)         n/a (1.4%)

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