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Inflation Declined in Most Advanced Economies

Threat of Deflation Persists in Euro Area

NEW YORK, March 6, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- In January, annual inflation as measured by the Harmonized Index of Consumer Prices (HICP) declined in 9 of the 16 economies compared.

The largest declines occurred in the Netherlands (from 1.4 to 0.8 percent), Austria (from 2.0 to 1.5 percent), and Japan (from 1.9 to 1.6 percent). Among euro area economies, declines also occurred in Italy and Belgium, while inflation held steady in Germany, France, and Spain.

"Driven by stable prices in the euro area's largest economies, inflation in the monetary union as a whole remained unchanged in January," said Elizabeth Crofoot, Senior Economist with the International Labor Comparisons program at The Conference Board. "This trend, however, masks slowing price growth in Austria, Belgium, Italy, and the Netherlands. The continued threat of deflation means that euro area countries cannot yet give an economic sigh of relief as we head into 2014."

January inflation was lowest in Switzerland and Sweden, and highest in Norway, the United Kingdom and Japan. Inflation in 9 of the 16 economies compared was lower than one percent. The Netherlands posted inflation of less than one percent for the first time since June 2010.

About HICP and International Labor Comparisons (ILC)
Harmonized Indexes of Consumer Prices are measures of consumer price inflation that have been standardized across countries based on European Union definitions. A monthly report compiles HICP trends for 16 economies, alongside conventional Consumer Price Indexes (CPI) as measured by national governments. The Conference Board adjusts official HICP and CPI metrics to a common base year to facilitate comparison with the United States.

The data is published as part of The Conference Board International Labor Comparisons program. Formerly a division of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, ILC is dedicated to producing economic indicators that optimize research, comparison, and planning in a global context.

For more information about The Conference Board ILC program:
www.conference-board.org/ilcprogram

For the associated report, tables, and technical notes, see
www.conference-board.org/ilcprogram/consumerpricesmonthly

About The Conference Board
The Conference Board is an independent business membership and research association working in the public interest. Our mission is unique: To provide the world's leading organizations with the practical knowledge they need to improve their performance and better serve society. The Conference Board is a non-advocacy, not-for-profit entity holding 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt status in the United States.  www.conference-board.org.

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