Inflation eased in October in Germany's most populous state of North Rhine-Westphalia, according to data released on Monday, pointing to a substantial cooling in headline inflation in the euro zone area's largest economy.

The inflation rate in North Rhine-Westphalia slowed to 3.1% in October from 4.2% in September.

Due to base effects in food and energy prices, Germany's headline CPI rate is expected to fall further in October.

Economists polled by Reuters forecast Germany's harmonised inflation at 3.3% in October, down from 4.3% in September. Inflation data will be published on Monday. (Reporting by Maria Martinez; editing by Matthias Williams)