Inflation in the United States grew in April by the largest amount in more than three years, a Labor Department report showed Tuesday, May 17, 2016.
Gains were largely attributed to an increase in the cost of gasoline, although they were broad-based across both goods and services that Americans consume.
According to the latest monthly report, the Labor Department’s Consumer Price Index (CPI) jumped 0.4% in April compared to the 0.1% increase in March. The single month advance was the biggest since February 2013.
"We’re seeing budding, but by no means in full bloom, inflation," said Stuart Hoffman, chief economist at PNC Financial Services Group Inc. "Some of that is just a reversal of the huge fundamental decline in oil and gasoline that we’ve seen, and the other part is the service side of the economy."
Gas prices spiked 8.1% last month. The more encompassing energy category rose 3.4%. Food prices, meanwhile, rose 0.2%. Stripping food and energy, so-called core consumer prices rose 0.2% in April as compared to their 0.1% level in March.
12-Month / Annual Changes
Inflation ran at a rate of 1.1% through the 12 months ended April, compared to the previous annual rate increase of 0.9%.
Over the last 12 months across major "none-core" categories, energy prices fell 8.9%, with gasoline down 13.8%, while the cost of food moved 0.9% higher.
Core consumer inflation over the past 12 months registered at a pace of 2.1%, down a percentage point from the 12-months ended March. Core areas with annual increases included medical care (commodities by 2.7% and services 3.1%), shelter (3.2%), and transportation (3.3%). Items falling from a year ago included used car and trucks (-1.5%) and clothing (-0.6%).
Below are the most-watched consumer prices by category as well as their month-over-month and annual changes. For the full Bureau of Labor Statistics summary report for April, visit http://www.bls.gov/news.release/archives/cpi_05172016.htm.
Consumer Prices (%)
|Oct 2015||Nov 2015||Dec 2015||Jan 2016||Feb 2016||Mar 2016||Apr 2016||12 Month|
|Food at home||.0||-0.3||-0.4||-0.2||0.2||-0.5||0.1||-0.3|
|Food away from home||0.2||0.2||0.1||0.3||0.1||0.2||0.2||2.7|
|Gasoline (all types)||0.9||0.8||-4.8||-4.8||-13.0||2.2||8.1||-13.8|
|Utility (piped) gas service||-0.9||-1.7||-1.9||-0.6||1.0||-0.7||0.6||-6.5|
|All items less food, energy||0.2||0.2||0.2||0.3||0.3||0.1||0.2||2.1|
|Commodities less food, energy||-0.1||-0.1||-0.1||0.2||0.3||-0.2||-0.1||-0.5|
|Used cars and trucks||-0.1||0.1||0.2||0.1||0.2||-0.1||-0.3||-1.5|
|Services less energy||0.3||0.3||0.2||0.3||0.3||0.2||0.3||3.0|
The Consumer Price Index report for May has a scheduled release date of June 16, 2016 at 8:30 a.m. (EDT).