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Government Stats Show Lower Inflation

Numbers from the census and labor statistics bureaus show little upward movement in prices

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Prices of food eaten at home declined a bit in April, while those for dining out rose slightly. PHOTO: ISTOCKPHOTO

Two major just-released indices for April showed the U.S. economy is cooling:

* The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers increased 0.3% for the month on a seasonally adjusted basis, after rising 0.4% in March, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. The April figure is up 3.4% from a year earlier.

* The Advance Estimates of U.S. Retail and Food Services for the month was $705.2 billion, virtually unchanged from a month earlier but up 3% from a year earlier, the U.S. Census Bureau reported.

“Core prices, which exclude volatile food and energy items, logged their lowest increase since April 2021, offering relief to investors and the Fed after a run of data at the start of the year revealed simmering price pressures,” The Wall Street Journal noted in its coverage of the data.

Some other highlights from the census bureau’s report:

  • The index for shelter rose in April, as did the index for gasoline. Combined, these two indexes contributed over 70% of the monthly increase in the index for all items.
  • The food index was unchanged in April. The food at home index declined 0.2%, while the food away from home index rose 0.3% over the month.
  • The all-items index rose 3.4% for the 12 months ending April, a smaller increase than the 3.5% increase for the 12 months ending in March.

Click here for more from the census bureau report and here for that of the labor statistics bureau.

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