Food and beverages index climbs 0.5% in August

by Eric Schroeder
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WASHINGTON — The Consumer Price Index for food and beverages rose 0.5% in August, climbing to 229.6 from 228.5 in July, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the Department of Labor. The 0.5% gain followed advances of 0.4% in July and 0.2% in June.

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

For the second consecutive month, five of the six major grocery store food groups increased during August, led by a 1.1% gain in cereals and bakery products.

The index for cereals and bakery products was 262.4 in August, up from 259.6 in July.

The index for dairy and related products, which rose 1.2% in July, again advanced sharply, gaining 0.9% in August to 216.7.

The other food at home index rose 0.8% in August to 199.2, up from 197.7 in July. The B.L.S. said the gain was driven in large part by a 1.2% increase in the index for sugar and sweets.

A 0.6% increase was scored in the index for fruits and vegetables. At 287.2, the index was up from 285.6 in July and 282.2 in June.

The index for meats, poultry, fish and eggs increased 0.4% to 225.5, while the index for food at home rose 0.6% to 228.5.

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

The overall Consumer Price Index rose 0.4% in August to 226.3 after climbing 0.5% in July. The index now has increased 3.8% over the past 12 months.

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