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German inflation expected to ease in April

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BERLIN (Reuters) - Inflation looks set to ease in Germany in April on the back of lower food and energy prices, preliminary data from six economically important regional states showed on Friday.

The inflation rate in Brandenburg fell to 7.6% year-on-year, and in Baden-Wuerttemberg it fell to 7.3%. It slowed to 6.9% in Hesse and 6.8% in North-Rhine Westphalia. In the eastern state of Saxony, inflation declined to 7.6% in April. In Bavaria, it remained unchanged at 7.2%.

In March, inflation rates for the six states had been between 6.9% and 8.3%.

National inflation data will be published at 1200 GMT. Consumer prices are forecast to rise by 7.3% year-on-year, according to economists surveyed by Reuters. That would be the lowest level since August 2022.

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In March, the inflation dropped to 7.4% from 8.7% in January and February.

In harmonised terms, economists polled by Reuters expect the rate of price rises to remain unchanged at 7.8% in April.

"Food inflation is passing its peak," said Berenberg Bank chief economist Holger Schmieding, citing one reason for the expected lower inflation rate in April.

In addition, energy prices were also not rising as sharply as they were just a few months ago.

Most experts expect the inflation rate to ease more sharply in the coming months. Import, wholesale and producer prices have already eased significantly, and this slowdown is likely to reach consumers with a delay.

(Reporting by Maria Martinez and Rene Wagner; Editing by Miranda Murray and Hugh Lawson)