Australian CPI eased to +0.8% on quarter in Q4 from +1.2% in Q3 but came in above consensus of +0.5%.
On year, inflation rose to 2.7% from 2.2% and also topped forecasts of 2.5%. The latest figure compares with the Reserve Bank of Australia's target of 2-3% and so may reduce the scope of the RBA to further cut rates.
Core CPI +0.9% vs +0.7% and +0.6%. On year, core inflation +2.6%.
Increases in the cost of recreation, alcohol, tobacco and food led the rise in inflation, although the prices of clothing and footwear and health-related items fell.
The S&P/ASX 200 is -0.2% and the AUD-USD is +0.8% at $0.8875. (PR)