Inflation in Germany slowed in March, data released
Wednesday showed, which should help to ease the pressure on the
European Central Bank (ECB).
Annual consumer prices in the eurozone's biggest economy edged down to 2.1 percent this month from 2.3 percent in February, the statistics office said.
This took the consumer prices in Germany closer to the 2 percent annual ceiling set by the ECB.
The decline gives the Frankfurt-based bank more room to move in dealing with the eurozone's debt crisis and to shore up economic confidence in the region.
Lower consumer prices mean that it should be easier for the fiercely anti-inflationary bank to press on with trimming interest rates if the eurozone economy takes a sudden turn for the worse.
Analysts had expected the preliminary data would show German inflation would ease to 2.2 percent this month.
The release of the German inflation figures came ahead of the publication on Friday of the latest consumer price data for the 17-member eurozone.
The European Union's statistics office Eurostat is forecast by analysts to say that annual inflation in the eurozone slipped from 2.7 percent in February to 2.6 percent in March.
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