C.P.I. climbs for five of six grocery groups

by Eric Schroeder
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WASHINGTON — The Consumer Price Index for food and beverages rose 0.4% in September, climbing to 230.5 from 229.6 in August, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the Department of Labor. The gain followed advances of 0.5% in August and 0.4% in July.

The food index also rose 0.4% in September after rising 0.5% in August.

For the third consecutive month, five of the six major grocery store food groups increased during September, led by a 1.2% gain in dairy and related products.

The index for dairy and related products was 219.4 in September, up from 216.7 in August. The gain followed advances of 0.9% in August and 1.2% in July.

A 0.9% increase occurred in the index for cereals and bakery products. At 264.8, the index was up from 262.4 in August. The gain comes on the heels of an advance of 1.1% in August.

Also advancing 0.9% in September was the index for fruits and vegetables, moving up to 289.7 from 287.2. Within the segment, the indexes for apples and tomatoes both posted significant increases, the B.L.S. said.

The index for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs rose 0.4% to 226.3 as the index for eggs rose sharply.

The other food at home index rose 0.6% in September to 200.4, up from 199.2 in August. The B.L.S. said the gain was driven in large part by a 1.7% increase in the index for sugar and sweets.

The only exception to the gains in the food and beverage category was the index for nonalcoholic beverages, which was unchanged at 168. The segment fell 0.2% in August.

The overall Consumer Price Index rose 0.3% in September to 227 after climbing 0.4% in August. The index now has increased 3.9% over the past 12 months.

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