German December inflation slows, 2015 rate hits record-low

Price reductions in Berlin, Germany
Sean Gallup | Getty Images
Price reductions in Berlin, Germany

German annual inflation unexpectedly slowed in December and the rate for the whole of 2015 fell to its lowest level on record, data showed on Monday, in a sign that overall price pressures in Europe's largest economy remain extremely weak.

German prices, harmonised to compare with other European countries (HICP), rose by 0.2 percent on the year after a 0.3-percent increase in November, preliminary data from the Federal Statistics Office showed.

The reading came in below the consensus forecast of 0.4 percent in a Reuters poll, and was far from the European Central Bank's target for the whole euro zone of just below 2 percent.

For the whole year 2015, the harmonised inflation rate fell to 0.1 percent. That was the lowest reading since 1995 when the statistics office started compiling the data in that form, an official said.

The statistics office said it would publish final consumer price data for December on Jan 19.