Euro zone prices rose by 1.7% in April, EU statistics agency Eurostat confirmed today, while slightly revising upwards its estimates for core inflation. 

Eurostat said consumer prices in the 19-nation euro zone were 1.7% higher year-on-year, the same level as the flash estimate published on May 3, and up from 1.4% in March. 

The acceleration offers some mild relief to the European Central Bank, which targets inflation of just below 2%, although the jump was likely related to the later timing of Easter this year.

On a Monthly basis, euro zone prices increased by 0.7%, as markets had expected, from 1% in March. 

The core indicator watched closely by the ECB for its monetary policy decisions, which excludes volatile energy and food prices, rose to 1.4% in April on the year from 1% in March. 

That compared with a flash estimate of 1.3%. 

A narrower inflation indicator that excludes energy, food, alcohol and tobacco was also confirmed increasing to 1.3% from 0.8% in March. For this, the flash estimate had been 1.2%. 

Inflation as a whole rose because of a 5.3% increase in energy prices, a 1.9% rise in the prices of services and a 1.5% hike of food, alcohol and tobacco prices.