© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A saleswoman shows a bag to customers in a shoe shop in Ronda, Spain, December 13, 2022. REUTERS/Jon Nazca

MADRID (Reuters) -Spain’s consumer prices rose 5.8% year-on-year in January, a faster pace than the 5.7% over the 12 months to December and the first increase since July,¬†preliminary data from the National Statistics Institute (INE) showed on Monday.

INE attributed the price increase to fuel prices, as the government ended blanket subsidy on all fuels, while prices of clothes and shoes did not fall as fast as during January 2022.

INE said it changed the methodology of calculate electricity and gas prices in January.

Core inflation, which strips out volatile fresh food and energy prices, was 7.5% year-on-year, higher than the 7.0% recorded in December, the INE data showed.

Spain’s European Union-harmonised 12-month inflation was 5.8%, up from 5.5% in December and above the 4.7% expectation from analysts polled by Reuters.

The headline price index had fallen fast over the second half of 2022 from a peak of 10.8% in July to 5.7% in December, the slowest in the euro area.

The Spanish data comes as the European Central Bank has all but committed to raising its key rate by half a percentage point this week to 2.5%, but policymakers are expressing different preferences for March depending on their inflation outlooks.

The euro rose slightly after the data was released.

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