Consumer Price Index up again in month

by Eric Schroeder
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WASHINGTON — The overall Consumer Price Index in August increased 0.3% for the second consecutive month. The gain follows declines of 0.1% in June, 0.2% in May and 0.1% in April. At 218.2, the index was up 1.1% over the past 12 months, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the Department of Labor. The index for food and beverages also finished higher, rising 1.1% to 220. The index had been virtually flat for the past three months.

The energy index rose 2.3% in August, and, as in July, was the primary factor driving the all items increase. All major energy components posted increases, with the gasoline index being the main factor, the B.L.S. said.

The food index, meanwhile, rebounded from a 0.1% decline in July to finish 0.2% higher in August, at 219.6.
After several months of sharp declines, the index for fruits and vegetables was the big mover in the food category, rising 0.4% to 270.4.

Also finishing higher during August were the indexes for food away from home, up 0.3%, and for cereals and bakery products, up 0.2%.

Food at home finished unchanged at 215.5.

The index for meats, poultry, fish and eggs index, which has been the big mover in recent months, eased 0.3% to 208.5. The decline ended seven straight months of increases.

The indexes for dairy and related products, as well as for non alcoholic beverages, each fell 0.1% during August.

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