Inflation Picks Up – Consumer Trends

A measure of inflation as gauged by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) accelerated by more than forecast over the past year. The CPI, which excludes food and energy, rose 2.4% from a year earlier as reported by the Department of Labor. These statistics are tracked by the Labor Department since they affect all U.S. workers throughout the country. The latest reading of 2.4% may be considered inflationary by some economists.

Each month, the Bureau of Labor Statistics compiles and releases its most recent inflation readings. Even though the data fluctuates month to month, economists pay close attention to consistent decreases or increases. A consistent trend with monthly CPI increases so far this year, has been greater than the monthly changes in 2018. CPI data registered no change from November 2018 through January 2019, yet have seen consistent measurable gains thereafter.

Of the various costs tracked and measured, medical and health insurance related costs registered their single largest gains since 2016.

Source: BLS, Labor Department

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