BERLIN (AP) – Annual inflation in Germany accelerated to 7.9% in May, the highest level in nearly half a century, according to official estimates on Monday.
The Federal Bureau of Statistics said year-on-year inflation rose from 7.4% in April, with energy prices up 38.3% from May last year and food prices up 11.1%. Germany has the largest economy in Europe.
This is the highest inflation rate since the winter of 1973-1974, when the oil crisis also contributed to rising prices. Inflation in Germany was already high at 5.1% in February and jumped above 7% in March after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
On a monthly basis, according to statistics, prices rose by 0.9% in May.
In a separate report Monday, the agency said German wages in the first quarter of this year fell in real terms by 1.8% from a year earlier as a result of inflation, which more than offset nominal growth by 4%.
In comments shortly before the publication of the latest inflation, Finance Minister Christian Lindner said that “the main priority should be to fight inflation.”
“Inflation is a huge economic risk, and we must fight this inflation so that the economic crisis does not grow out of it, so that the spiral through which inflation is fueled does not develop,” Lindner said.