Canadian inflation was slightly stronger than expected in October as prices rose for almost all consumer items but the rate remained well below the central bank's 2 percent target, suggesting interest rate hikes are still a long way off.

Gasoline and electricity prices grew at a slower year-on-year pace than in September while prices for food, air travel and property taxes rose more sharply in the same period, Statistics Canada said in a report on Friday.

Annual inflation held steady at 1.2 percent, unchanged from September but above the 1.1 percent forecast by market players. The consumer price index rose 0.2 percent in October from September.

Core inflation, which strips out gasoline and other volatile items, was unchanged from September at 1.3 percent after that index advanced 0.3 percent on the month. Market players had forecast 1.2 percent core inflation.

Prices rose in all major components except clothing and footwear, Statscan said.

But with price pressures remaining below 2 percent since March, there is little pressure on the Bank of Canada to follow through on its warning that it may need to raise interest rates, a stance that has made it an outlier among major economies.