In the month of May, the interannual rate of the Consumer Price Index, CPI decreases seven tenths to stand at 0.8%, mainly due to the moderation of energy prices compared to the notable increases of May 2018, as CEOE had been advancing.
Core inflation decreases two tenths to 0.7%, once the Easter effect on the prices of Services has elapsed. Analyzing its components, it is observed that the rest of them continue registering very moderate increases. Thus, the prices of the Services decrease their variation rate by five tenths to 1.2%. The prices of industrial goods without energy products maintained their variation at 0.2% and those of processed foods, beverages and tobacco also remained at 0.3%.
Food without processing, exacerbate the slowdown in prices that had been showing in recent months and are at 1.0%, thanks to the decline in prices in some of the most inflationary components such as vegetables and fresh fish, to which it is united the remarkable reduction of prices of fresh fruits and oils and fats.
Energy prices in May continued the path of moderation begun in April and much more sharply. Specific, the interannual rate in this month of the prices of energy products was 5.4%, more than four points less than the previous month.
In May, the price of oil has continued slightly with its upward trend, with Brent crude, on average, at 71.9 $ / barrel. This price increase has been influenced by the armed conflict in Libya and the tightening of sanctions on Iran, after the exemptions to trade with Iranian oil were canceled. In interannual terms, the variation was negative, -7.5%, although in euros it was lower -2.3%, due to the depreciation of the European currency against the US dollar. For the next few months the price is expected to remain slightly above 70 $ / barrel, due to the geopolitical tensions mentioned.
The Harmonized Consumer Price Index stood at 0.9% in May, seven tenths less than the previous month, and the average index of the Economic and Monetary Union also declined five tenths to 1.2%. Thus, the differential with the euro zone stands at three tenths.
For the next few months, inflation will remain below 1.0%, for which it will have the help of core inflation, in an environment of less dynamism and as long as there are no negative external shocks. The improvement of the competitiveness-price of the Spanish economy, via moderation of inflation, will only be sustainable over time if it is accompanied by the containment of other costs (fiscal, labor …).