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On the way down?

The first set of Germany’s March inflation numbers are in and point to a softening inflation rate in Europe’s largest economy this month.

Saxony, the first major German region to reveal its inflation figures, reported a dip in its annual consumer price rises from a four-year high of 2.4 per cent to 1.8 per cent in March.

We’ll be getting a first estimate of the nationwide numbers at 1300 (BST). Germany’s inflation rate hit 2.2 per cent in February – the highest since 2012 – on the back of sharp jumps in vegetable prices including a whopping 140 per cent climb in lettuce costs.

Analysts expect price growth to soften to around 1.9 per cent this month- helping ease criticism on the European Central Bank from the German economic establishment which has warned its stimulus policies are becoming increasingly inappropriate for the eurozone’s dominant economy.

Last week, the ECB’s chief economist Peter Praet said caution is warranted on eurozone inflation, noting that “inflation is higher because of oil, which, by the way, has fallen by 10 per cent recently”.

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