Eurozone sees negative inflation of 0.2% in December

Consumer prices in the eurozone fell 0.2 per cent in December, entering negative territory for the first time since the depths of the financial crisis in 2009, European Union data showed on Wednesday, Jan 7, 2015. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Consumer prices in the eurozone fell 0.2 per cent in December, entering negative territory for the first time since the depths of the financial crisis in 2009, European Union data showed on Wednesday, Jan 7, 2015. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

BRUSSELS (AFP) - Consumer prices in the eurozone fell 0.2 per cent in December, entering negative territory for the first time since the depths of the financial crisis in 2009, European Union data showed on Wednesday.

The drop, brought on by plummeting oil prices, is the first concrete sign of much-feared deflation in the now 19-nation currency zone. Deflation is officially defined by prices falling over a longer period.

The EU's data agency Eurostat also reported that unemployment remained at 11.5 per cent in November, unchanged from October.