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AFP
July 15, 2020

US inflation spikes 0.6 percent in June

Business

AFP
July 15, 2020

Washington: Consumer inflation jumped in June as the US economy began to partially reopen, rising 0.6 percent on a rebound in gasoline prices, the Labor Department reported on Tuesday.

The spike came after three months of declines in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) amid shutdowns to contain the coronavirus pandemic, and was the biggest increase since August 2012.

But the data doesn´t encompass the recent resurgence in case counts in several states, which have prompted authorities to restore some restrictions.

After falling to record lows in recent months, gasoline prices in June jumped 12.3 percent, accounting for half of the overall increase in CPI, according to the report. Gas prices had fallen more than 20 percent in April.

Excluding volatile food and energy goods, the closely-watched core CPI rose just 0.2 percent, the first increase since February, according to the monthly data.

For the 12 months ended in June, CPI was up 0.6 percent, compared to just 0.1 percent in May, while the core inflation measure was up 1.2 percent.

Oxford Economics said the data show deflation worries have subsided, for now, but "the slow recovery in aggregate demand will keep the pace of inflation very subdued in the coming months."

For the 12 months ended in June, CPI was up 0.6 percent, compared to just 0.1 percent in May, while the core inflation measure was up 1.2 percent.

Food prices continued to rise last month but at slower pace than the prior two months, increasing 0.6 percent compared to May, according to the report.

The cost of medical care jumped 0.5 percent in the month but housing inched up only 0.1 percent. Prices for new vehicles were flat, while used car costs fell 1.2 percent.