Consumer prices up 0.7% in June, inflation falls 1.4% in year

U.S. consumer prices jumped in June as higher energy costs — gasoline prices in particular — drove up the cost of living, although year-over-year inflation fell by the largest amount since Jan. 1950.

The Consumer Price Index, which measures inflation pressures at the consumer level, rose 0.7% in June following a 0.1% increase in May, the Labor Department reported Wednesday. At the same time, inflation fell 1.4% compared to a year ago when energy prices were at their height. The annual decline is the biggest in 59 years.

"It’s a bit of a bogus comparison, because we’re comparing gas prices at nearly their astronomical peak last year," Stuart Hoffman, economist at PNC, was quoted on CNNMoney.com and referred to the the-record high gasoline prices of over $4 per gallon in July 2008.

Excluding volatile food and energy prices, the core CPI rose 0.2% in June after a 0.1% increase in May. Continue reading Consumer prices up 0.7% in June, inflation falls 1.4% in year

Inflation Calculator Adjusted

The cost of living in the U.S. climbed in June at the fastest pace since last summer. And like then, surging energy costs were mostly responsible.

Consumer prices rose 0.7% in June after a 0.1% increase in May as energy costs jumped 7.4% with prices at the pump up 17.3%.

Despite that, Labor Department Consumer Price Index (CPI) data released Wednesday shows the annual US inflation rate fell 1.4%, marking the biggest decline since Jan. 1950. Continue reading Inflation Calculator Adjusted

Producer prices surge 1.8% in June, led by energy costs

U.S. producer prices jumped to double the level expected, as surging energy prices weighed in heavily for the month.

The Producer Price Index (PPI) rose by 1.8% in June, the biggest increase since November 2007, according to a Labor Department report released Tuesday. The PPI measures prices at the factory door and inflation pressures before they reach the consumer.

The June PPI increase follows a 0.2% rise in May when energy costs had increased 2.9%. While gasoline prices have declined in recent weeks and in particular during early July, they are not reflected in June numbers, which shows energy prices climbed 6.6% — with heating oil costs rising 15.4% and gasoline prices soaring 18.5%.

"Sharply higher gasoline prices are the primary culprit behind the jump in the headline number," Tom Porcelli, a senior economist at RBC Capital Markets in New York, was quoted on Bloomberg. For other items, he said, "the risk is skewed toward prices remaining soft over the near term."

Continue reading Producer prices surge 1.8% in June, led by energy costs