Consumer Price Index Increases 0.4% in March; All-Item Index Up 3.5% Year-Over-Year

On Wednesday, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.4% in March, seasonally adjusted, following a similar 0.4% increase in February. Over the past 12 months, the all-item index has increased 3.5% before seasonal adjustment.

The index for shelter rose in March, as did the index for gasoline. Combined, these two indexes contributed over half of the monthly increase in the index for all items, the BLS reported. The energy index rose 1.1% over the month. The food index rose 0.1%. The food at home index was unchanged, while the food away from home index rose 0.3% over the month.

The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.4% in March, the same as in February and January. Other indexes posting increases in March included shelter, motor vehicle insurance, medical care, apparel, and personal care. The indexes for used cars and trucks, recreation, and new vehicles were among those that declined.

The all-items index increased 3.5% for the 12 months ending in March, a larger increase than the 3.2% gain in February. The all items less food and energy index rose 3.8% year-over-year. The energy index increased 2.1%, while the food index increased 2.2%.

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