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Inflation Rose More Than Expected in August

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A cart full of groceries | Image by Khairil Azhar Junos / Shutterstock.com

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(The Center Square) – Inflation rose more than expected in August, leaving Americans facing even higher prices on a range of everyday purchases, according to newly released federal inflation data.

The Bureau of Economic Analysis released the pricing data, which showed the Personal Consumption Expenditure excluding food and energy, a key marker of inflation, rose 0.6%, higher than expected by Dow Jones.

“From the preceding month, the PCE price index for August increased 0.3 percent…” BEA said. “Prices for goods decreased 0.3 percent and prices for services increased 0.6 percent.”

Food prices have risen faster than most other items, making groceries harder for Americans to afford. The overall rise in prices has been in part offset by the recent drop in gas prices from record highs in June.

Last week, though, those gas prices began to rise again, suggesting September data could tell a different story.

“Food prices increased 0.8 percent and energy prices decreased 5.5 percent,” BEA said.

Overall, prices are much higher than they were a year ago.

“From the same month one year ago, the PCE price index for August increased 6.2 percent…” BEA said. “Prices for goods increased 8.6 percent and prices for services increased 5.0 percent. Food prices increased 12.4 percent and energy prices increased 24.7 percent. Excluding food and energy, the PCE price index increased 4.9 percent from one year ago.”

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