U.S. consumer inflation eased in March, with less expensive gas and food providing some relief to households that have struggled under the weight of surging prices. Yet prices are still rising fast enough to keep the Federal Reserve on track to raise interest rates at least once more, beginning in May.
The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 0.1% in March, after increasing by 0.4% in February, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The all-items index increased 5.0% for the 12 months ending March, the lowest 12-month increase since the period ending May 2021.
The index for shelter was again the largest contributor to the increase, which more than offset a decline in the energy index of 3.5%. Other increases included motor vehicle insurance, airline fares, household furnishings, and new vehicles. The indexes for medical care and used cars and trucks decreased. The food index was unchanged, but the food at home index fell 0.3%, its first decline since September 2020. Click here for more.