The U.S. cost of living unexpectedly declined in April for the first time in more than a year, signaling that the tugs of inflation remain weak.
Consumer prices edged down 0.1% in April, the Labor Department said Wednesday in its monthly Consumer Price Index report. The CPI is the government’s key inflation barometer, measuring inflation at the consumer level. Many forecasters were expecting a 0.1% increase. Last month’s decline was led by falling energy prices.
"The index for energy decreased 1.4 percent in April and accounted for the seasonally adjusted decline in the all items index. The indexes for gasoline and natural gas both decreased significantly, outweighing increases in the indexes for fuel oil and electricity," the Consumer Price Index Summary report stated.
Core prices, which strips out volatile food and energy items, remained unchanged last month.
Inflation over the past 12 months increased 2.2%. The core inflation rate rose 0.9% over the last year — the smallest annual gain since January 1966.
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 also updated:
- Historic CPI Data (1913 – 2010)
- Current Inflation Rates (2000 – 2010)
- Historical Inflation Rates (1914 – 2010)
- Rate of Inflation, Annual Averages
For a more detailed report of consumer prices in April, read U.S. Inflation Rises 2.2% for the Year.