C.P.I. for food and beverages rises 0.5% in June

by Eric Schroeder
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WASHINGTON — The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers increased 0.2% in June, before seasonal adjustment, the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor said. The June level of 208.4 was 2.7% higher than in June 2006. The index for food and beverages was 203.2 in June, up 0.5% from 202.2 in May.

On a seasonally adjusted basis, the C.P.I. increased 0.2% in June, following up a 0.7% advance in May. Within the overall C.P.I., energy costs, which have been on a sharp upward climb, eased 0.5% in June. Within energy, the index for petroleum-based energy fell 0.9%, while the index for energy services declined 0.1%.

The index for food at home continued its upward climb, rising 0.6% to 201.5.

More than half of the gain in food at home was attributed to an increase in the index for dairy products, which rose 3.2% in June to 193.3. Within dairy, milk prices rose 3.5%, bringing the year-to-date increase to 9.9%.

The index for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs was 197.6, up 0.5% from May and the fourth consecutive month of stronger numbers. The indexes for pork and for beef increased 0.5% and 0.2%, respectively, while poultry prices rose 2.1%. Through the first six months of 2007, beef and pork prices each have risen 5.2% and poultry prices 6.5%.

The C.P.I. for fruits and vegetables, which eased 0.5% in May, again declined, falling 1.1% in June to 260.6.

The indexes for fresh vegetables and for fresh fruits declined 2.7% and 0.7%, respectively, while the index for processed fruits and vegetables increased 1.4%, the B.L.S. said.

After finishing virtually unchanged in May, the index for cereal and bakery products rose 0.7% to 221.

The index for other food at home, which was basically unchanged in May, also advanced, climbing 0.7% to 201.5.

The index for nonalcoholic beverages rose 0.3%.

The other two components of the food and beverage index — food away from home and alcoholic beverages — increased 0.3% and 0.4%, respectively, in June, the B.L.S. said.

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