Keeping you up to date on the latest data releases.
The headline CPI decreased at an annualized rate of 2.6 percent in June, though is still up 3.6 percent over the past year. June’s decrease was due in large part to a sizeable decline in gasoline prices (down 57 percent at an annualized rate). Household energy prices decreased as well during the month, falling 13.3 percent. Food prices rose 2.4 percent in June, the series’ smallest monthly increase so far this year. Excluding food and energy prices, the (“core”) CPI rose 3.1 percent in June (higher than expected), following a 3.5 percent increase in May. Over the past 3 months, the index has risen 2.9 percent, compared to its longer-term (12-month) growth rate of 1.6 percent. The largest component of the core index—owners’ equivalent rent—rose 1.9 percent in June, a modest acceleration over its increase of 1.2 percent in May (though that doesn't appear to be the “culprit” for the uptick in the core). Price increases in lodging away from home, new and used autos, and apparel accounted for much of the increase. The index for lodging away from home followed up its 40 percent spike up in May (its largest price increase since October 2005) by increasing 42.6 percent in June. Car and truck rental, a particularly noisy series, rose 51 percent in June, more than rebounding from a 42 percent decrease in May. New vehicle prices, which jumped up 14 percent in May, rose 7.5 percent in June and have risen 8.3 percent over the past six months, compared to a growth rate of -0.5 percent over the six months prior to that. Also, used car prices jumped up 22 percent during the month, the series’ largest monthly increase since December 2009. Apparel prices jumped up 18.3 percent in June (its largest monthly increase since mid-1990), in part as the seasonally-adjusted index for men’s apparel posted its largest one month jump up in the history of the series (which dates back to 1947), rising 35.4 percent. Measures of underlying inflation produced by the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland were much more subdued than the core CPI in June, as the median CPI rose 1.7 percent and the 16 percent trimmed-mean CPI increased just 1.2 percent. Over the past 3 months, the median and trim are up 2.2 percent and 2.4 percent, respectively, at least 0.5 percentage points below the near-term growth rate in the core CPI.