Prices increased slightly for American’s in March and over the past 12 months, the government reported Wednesday.
Annual inflation rose 2.3%, according to the Labor Department’s Consumer Price Index, or CPI. The CPI is the government’s key inflation barometer, measuring inflation at the consumer level. March increases were greatly driven by fresh fruit and vegetables costs, with consumer prices edging up 0.1% for the month compared to a flat reading in February.
"The seasonally adjusted increase was mostly due to an increase in the fresh fruits and vegetables index, which rose 4.6 percent in March and accounted for over 60 percent of the all items increase," the Consumer Price Index Summary report stated.
Stripping out volatile food and energy prices, the core CPI was unchanged last month after rising 0.1% in February. The core CPI rose 1.1% from a year earlier versus the 1.3% reading noted in the 12 months ending in February.
The U.S. Inflation Calculator is updated, and the buying power of the U.S. dollar can be compared between any dates from 1913 to 2010. Additionally, the following 2010 inflation rate and data pages were updated:
- Historic CPI Data (1913 – 2010)
- Current Inflation Rates (2000 – 2010)
- Historical Inflation Rates (1914 – 2010)
- Rate of Inflation, Annual Averages
For a more in depth analysis of March consumer prices, to include price increases and decreases by item, read Consumer Prices Rise 0.1% in March.