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Inflation dropped to 6.3% in December, but food continued to rise

Canada's annual inflation rate slowed to 6.3% in December as the cost of groceries remained high and gasoline prices cooled.

In its latest consumer price index released Tuesday, Statistics Canada said Canadians continued to see prices at grocery stores soar last month compared with a year ago.

Grocery prices rose 11% year-over-year, a slight improvement from 11.4% in November, the federal agency said.

The nation's annual inflation rate peaked in the summer at 8.1% and has been slowly decelerating since then. In November, the annual inflation rate was 6.8%.

Meanwhile, Canadians saw some relief at the pump last month, paying 13.1% less compared to November. Statistics Canada said crude oil prices fell amid concerns about a slowdown in the global economy.

December's slowdown was also offset by increases in mortgage interest costs, clothing and footwear, and personal care items and equipment.

Excluding food and energy, prices rose 5.3% in December on an annual basis.

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