The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that the Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose by 0.2% in December on a seasonally adjusted basis, following a 0.3% increase in November. Excluding the volatile food and energy components, the “core” CPI increased by 0.1% in December, after rising 0.2% in November.
The food and energy indexes increased faster in December than last month. The food index increased by 0.2% in December, after a 0.1% increase in November. The indexes for food at home and food away from home increased over the month. Meanwhile, the price index for a broad set of energy sources rose by 1.4% in December, after rising 0.8% in November and 2.7% in October. The gasoline index rose by 2.8% in December, while the electricity index declined by 0.5%. The index for utility gas service increased by 0.3% in December, the third consecutive monthly increase.
Over the past twelve months, on a not seasonally adjusted basis, the CPI rose by 2.3% in December, faster than a 2.1% increase in November. It was the largest gain since October 2018 on a year-over-year basis. Meanwhile, the “core” CPI increased by 2.3% over the past twelve months, the same increase as in the previous two months (October and November). The food index rose by 1.8%, and the energy index increased by 3.4% over the past twelve month.