Friday, March 15, 2013

CPI Shows Strongest Climb in More Than Three Years

U.S. consumer prices rose 0.7% in February for the largest gain since June 2009. Gasoline prices rose 9.1%, also making the largest jump since June 2009.

The indexes for electricity, natural gas, and fuel oil also increased, leading to a 5.4 percent rise in the energy index.

Among major grocery store food group indexes, the fruits and vegetables index rose 1.4 percent,
 with both the fresh fruits and fresh vegetables indexes increasing 1.8 percent. The index for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs also rose in February, increasing 0.5 percent.

The index for dairy and related products declined 0.4 percent and the cereals and bakery products index fell 0.2 percent; both indexes rose in January. The index for food away from home rose 0.1 percent in February, its fifth straight such increase, and has risen 2.3 percent over the past year.

The all items index increased 2.0 percent over the last 12 months compared to a 1.6 percent increase for the 12 months ending January.

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