WASHINGTON — Consumer prices rose 0.4% in August on a seasonally adjusted basis, the Labor Department reported Thursday, following an unchanged 0.5% increase in July. Core consumer prices, excluding food and energy, climbed 0.2% in August, the same as their July increase.
Economists polled by Thomson Reuters had a median estimate of a 0.2% increase for both the overall and core numbers.
The consumer price index rise was broad-based, with continuing increases for gasoline, food, shelter, and apparel, Labor said.
Energy prices were up 1.2%, less than half of July’s 2.8% increase. Gasoline prices slowed down as well, with a 1.9% August increase following a 4.7% spike in July.
Food prices in August were up 0.5% overall. Food at home repeated its July increase of 0.6%. All major grocery groups rose except for non-alcoholic beverages.
In the core index, rent rose 0.4%, its largest increase since June 2008. Home ownership, defined as owners equivalent rent, rose 0.2%. It accounts for about a quarter of the core value.
Overall, services prices rose 0.2%.
Year over year, the consumer price index was 3.8% higher, while the core rate rose 2.0%.