The average Austrian consumer is now feeling the effects of inflation more every day: in addition to the massive rise in fuel prices, the consumer price index (CPI) is also rising significantly and, according to Statistics Austria, was 6.8 percent in March. This is the highest value since November 1981. Compared to February, the CPI is expected to have increased by 2.0 percent. Energy prices continue to be the main drivers. In February, the inflation rate was 5.9 percent. Food and beverages were 5.0 percent more expensive in March than a year ago.
In the entire euro zone, consumer prices rose by 7.5 percent year-on-year in March, according to an initial estimate from the Eurostat statistics office in Luxembourg. Analysts were surprised even by the strength of the price jump. On average, they had only expected inflation to rise from 5.9 percent in February to 6.7 percent. The inflation rate in the euro area has never been higher since the introduction of the common currency in 1999. Inflation has risen continuously since last summer, with record levels recently being reached. Month-on-month, consumer prices rose 2.5 percent in March. Here, too, the jump in price was much stronger than expected.
Meanwhile, the first retail chains in Germany have already begun to raise prices. “We will soon be able to see this on the price tags everywhere in the supermarkets.” “For now, there will be no more sustained downward movement in prices,” said Josef Sanktjohanser, President of the German Trade Association. Retail chains such as Aldi, Edeka and Globus had recently announced price increases.