Consumer prices provisionally fell 0.2 percent on the month in September. This put the annual inflation rate at 2.2 percent, down just a tick versus its final August mark and its first decline since February.
The flash HICP largely followed suit, also slipping 0.2 percent on the month for a yearly gain of 2.5 percent, similarly 0.1 percentage points below last time.
The dip in the annual CPI rate reflected some easing in both manufactured goods (minus 0.2 percent after minus 0.1 percent), where prices are still falling on the year, and, more significantly, services (1.1 percent after 1.3 percent). Food (2.8 percent after 2.2 percent) provided a useful boost but energy (12.8 percent after 13.0 percent) subtracted slightly. The implications are that core inflation was weaker than in August (0.9 percent).
The provisional September data leave intact a still soft picture of French underlying inflation.