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Sweden has become the latest European country to report a sharp pull back in inflation in March, highlighting the fragility of the Riksbank’s long-sought increase in prices.

The country’s year on year inflation rate sank to 1.3 per cent, from 1.8 per cent in February. Economists had expected a more modest decline to 1.5 per cent.

Falling prices for books, international flights and vegetables offset an increase in clothing prices, keeping the consumer price index flat on the month.

February’s inflation reading was a five-year high, but the country’s central bank has officially remained cautious about bringing an end to its quantitative easing programme amid fears the stronger krona will drive down the cost of imports.

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