LONDON -- Inflation in the 19 countries that use the euro currency hit a record 8.6% in June, pushed higher by a strong increase in energy costs fueled partly by Russia’s war in Ukraine. Food prices also picked up pace.
Annual inflation in the eurozone surged past the 8.1% recorded in May, according to the latest numbers published Friday by the European Union statistics agency, Eurostat. Inflation is at its highest level since recordkeeping for the euro began in 1997.
Energy prices rocketed 41.9%, and prices for food, alcohol and tobacco were up 8.9%, both faster than the increases recorded the previous month. Price increases for goods like clothing, appliances, cars, computers and books held fairly steady at 4.3%, as did prices for services 3.4%.
Inflation has been setting monthly records since last year, underscoring how the war's impact on global energy supplies is making life more expensive for the eurozone’s 343 million people.
To combat soaring consumer prices, the European Central Bank is planning its first interest rate hike in 11 years this month, followed by another increase in September.