August 24, 2014

CPI increases 0.1 percent in July

Aug. 20, 2014 – Overall consumer prices increased 0.1 percent in July on a seasonally adjusted basis, according to data published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics analyzed by NAFCU Chief Economist and Director of Research Curt Long.

For the 12-month period, overall consumer price index growth was 2 percent, down from 2.1 percent in June, Long noted in a NAFCU Macro Data Flash report.

"As we look ahead in anticipation of when the Federal Reserve will increase short-term rates, July's pause in the recent trend of rising prices affords some added breathing room to policymakers," Long said. "Both CPI and core CPI have moved closer to a historically normal pace recently, but the Fed's preferred measure for inflation remains below their stated inflation target."

Core prices – excluding food and energy costs – rose 0.1 percent in July month over month, which followed a 0.1 percent increase in June. Year-over-year core CPI grew 1.9 percent, compared to a 1.9 percent increase in June.

Energy prices decreased by 0.3 percent in July, following a 1.6 percent increase in June. From a year ago, energy prices were up 2.5 percent. Food prices increased 0.3 percent in July following no significant growth in June, and were up 2.4 percent on a year-over-year basis.

"Energy prices declined in July as gasoline, electricity, fuel oil and natural gas all retreated," Long said. "Core CPI remained at 0.1 percent in July as rising food prices offset the decline in energy prices."