German inflation reaches its highest level in more than 40 years

Annual inflation in Germany rose in April, reaching its highest level since autumn 1981, according to final data released by Germany’s statistics agency Destatis on Wednesday.

Consumer prices rose 7.4% year over year by national standards, in line with the first estimate and forecasts by economists polled by the Wall Street Journal. They increased by 7.8% year-on-year according to harmonized European Union standards, which is also in line with forecasts.

Since the Russian attack on Ukraine, the prices for natural gas and mineral oil products have risen again significantly and have a significant impact on the high inflation rate, according to Destatis.

A similarly high inflation rate in Germany was last recorded in 1981, when mineral oil prices rose as a result of the Iran-Iraq war, the statistics office said.

Other factors driving inflation are supply shortages due to the Covid-19 pandemic and sharp increases in energy prices as the economy recovers, Destatis said.

Consumer prices increased month-on-month by 0.8% by national standards and by 0.7% by EU harmonized standards, both in line with forecasts and confirming the first estimate.

Write to Maria Martinez at German inflation reaches its highest level in more than 40 years

Brian Lowry

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