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BUSINESS BRIEFS

Inflation slower than expected

CONSUMER prices in December 2004 rose more slowly than the National Bank of Slovakia expected, Igor Barát, spokesperson for the NBS, commented January 14.

Monthly inflation fell in December for the second consecutive month, by 0.2 percent, largely due to drops in food prices, fuel and other tradable goods, the TASR news agency reported.

Consumer prices rose last year by an average 7.5 percent while in December 2004 they were up by 5.9 percent on December 2003.

The central bank foresees January 2005 prices as mainly influenced by changes in regulated prices as well as the high-price of mandatory third-party liability motor insurance.

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