C.P.I. rises 0.2% in month; food and beverage index gains 0.3%

by Eric Schroeder
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WASHINGTON — The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers increased 0.2% in October, before seasonal adjustment, the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor said. The October level of 199.2 was 4.3% higher than in October 2004.

Within the overall C.P.I., energy costs, which had risen sharply in each of the previous three months, declined 0.2% in October, while the index for food and beverages rose 0.3%, up narrowly from a gain of 0.2% in September.

The index for food at home increased 0.3%, the same as in October.

The C.P.I. for fruits and vegetables was 245.7, up 1.3% from September. The indexes for fresh fruits and fresh vegetables increased 1.6% and 2.1%, respectively, while the index for processed fruits and vegetables decreased 0.6%, the B.L.S. said.

The index for cereals and bakery products rose 0.6% to 209.4, reflecting a 1% increase in the index for bakery products. The index for other food at home increased 0.4% to 168.3.

Partially offsetting these increases were declines in the indexes for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs and for nonalcoholic beverages.

The index for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs was 184.6, down 0.2% from September, as declines in poultry and egg prices — down 1.3% and 2.4%, respectively — more than offset increases in the indexes for beef, pork, and fish and seafood.

The C.P.I. for nonalcoholic beverages, which rose 0.8% in September, declined 0.1% in October, reflecting a downturn in prices for carbonated drinks, the B.L.S. said.

The index for dairy products was unchanged.

The other two components of the food and beverage index — food away from home and alcoholic beverages — increased 0.3% and 0.1%, respectively.

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