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Russian Inflation Slows to 17.1% in May before CB Meeting

June 8 (Reuters) - Consumer inflation in Russia slowed to 17.10% in year-on-year terms in May from 17.83% in April, which was its highest level since January 2002, data showed on Wednesday, days before the central bank's rate-setting meeting.

The central bank is expected to cut its key interest rate by 100 basis points to 10% on Friday as it tries to make lending more affordable amid sluggish consumer demand and a pause in inflation, a Reuters poll suggested.

Monthly inflation slowed to 0.12% from 1.56% in April, data from the federal statistics service Rosstat showed.

In March, monthly inflation jumped to 7.61%, its biggest month-on-month increase since January 1999, following Russia's move to send tends of thousands of troops into Ukraine on Feb. 24.

Rosstat data also showed that on a weekly basis consumer prices declined 0.01% in the week to June 3 after staying flat in the previous week.

"Stable inflation, although temporary, allows the central bank to ease its monetary policy," analysts at Raiffeisen Bank said in a note.

High inflation has been the key concern among households for years as it dents living standards, a fall which this year will be aggravated by a steep economic contraction.

Reporting by Reuters

Source: Reuters

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