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CPI report: Don’t worry about inflation this month – unless you drink alcohol

Post by C.R. Roberts / The News Tribune on July 17, 2012 at 12:26 pm |
July 17, 2012 12:26 pm

Here’s something you still don’t have to worry about: inflation.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics is out today with its latest bimonthly report on prices in the Tacoma area, and the news is relatively salubrious.

The price of daily life was up 0.7 percent in April and May, while the annual rate of inflation since June 2011 was up only 2.7 percent.

For the most recent period, blame the increase it on alcoholic beverages, which saw an increase of 4.7 percent, the highest increase among categories followed in the Consumer Price Index.

In other categories, the recently volatile gasoline marked a decrease of 2.1 percent since April – and remains up by 5.2 percent for the year. Clothing tagged a 2.9 percent decrease for the two months, while household furnishings tabled a 1.1 percent hike.

Groceries bagged an increase of 1.3 percent for the two months, adding a little heat to a 0.4 percent decrease in prices since June 2011. Restaurant prices sowed a 1.0 percent increase, adding to a 3.5 percent increase for the year.

The price of electricity generated a 1.2 percent increase for the two months and shows a 2.7 percent jump since June 2011, the bureau said.

Medical care and recreation both noted increases – of 0.5 percent and 1.9 percent respectively. Prices for education and communication were down 0.9 percent.

Meanwhile, in a second release Tuesday, the bureau said real average hourly earnings rose 0.2 percent in June over May, but are unchanged since June 2011. American workers in June earned an average hourly wage of $23.50 and worked an average of 34.5 hours per week – for average weekly earnings of $810.75.

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