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Swiss Consumer Prices Fell Less Than Expected in June

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July 5 (Bloomberg) -- Swiss consumer prices fell less than expected in June, due to higher prices for oil and fruits and vegetables.

Prices decreased 0.1 percent from a year earlier after dropping 0.5 percent in May, the Federal Statistics Office in Neuchatel said in an e-mailed statement today. Economists expected an annual decline of 0.4 percent, according to the median of 14 estimates in a Bloomberg News survey.

The Swiss National Bank imposed a franc ceiling of 1.20 versus the euro in September 2011 to fight deflation threats. Even so, consumer prices have continued to drop and on a yearly basis are now in their 21st straight month of declines, the longest stretch since at least 1971, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The SNB, headed by President Thomas Jordan, expects consumer prices to fall 0.3 percent in 2013.

The cost of imported consumer goods fell 1.5 percent from a year earlier and increased 0.2 percent from May, today’s report showed. Prices of domestic goods climbed 0.3 percent on the year and were 0.1 percent higher on the month.

Under a European Union harmonized method, Swiss consumer prices rose 0.2 percent from a year earlier and by the same measure on a monthly basis.

To contact the reporter on this story: Catherine Bosley in Zurich at cbosley1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Craig Stirling at cstirling1@bloomberg.net

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