US Inflation Rate Falls to 4-Month Low

The US annual inflation rate fell to 1.6 percent in June 2019 from 1.8 percent in the previous month and in line with market expectations.

Energy prices plunged 3.4 percent, following a 0.5 percent fall in the previous month. Within energy commodities, gasoline cost declined 5.4 percent (vs -0.2 percent in May) and fuel oil went down 5.6 percent (vs -0.8 percent in May). Within energy services, electricity prices retreated 0.3 percent (vs -0.2 percent in May) and utility (piped) gas service cost dropped 2.1 percent (vs -2.6 percent in May). Declines were also seen in cost of apparel (-1.3 percent vs -3.1 percent) and medical care commodities (-1.5 percent vs -0.7 percent).

Food inflation eased to 1.9 percent in June from 2 percent in May, due in particular to food at home (0.9 percent vs 1.2 percent) while costs of food away from home rose at faster pace (3.1 percent vs 2.9 percent). Additional price increases were recorded for transportation services (0.9 percent vs 1.1 percent); medical care services (2.8 percent); shelter (3.5 percent vs 3.3 percent); new vehicles (0.6 percent vs 0.9 percent); and used cars and trucks (1.2 percent vs 0.3 percent).

The core inflation rate, which excludes volatile items such as food and energy, edged up to 2.1 percent in June from 2 percent in May, beating market consensus of 2 percent.

On a monthly basis, consumer prices gained 0.1 percent in June, the same pace as in May and below expectations of 0.2 percent. The food index was unchanged while the energy index fell 2.3 percent. Additional upward pressure came from shelter, used cars and trucks, and apparel, the indexes for household furnishings and operations, medical care, and motor vehicle insurance; while declines were seen in recreation, airline fares, and personal care. Core consumer prices increased 0.3 percent, the largest increase since January 2018 and also above forecasts of 0.2 percent.

US Inflation Rate Falls to 4-Month Low

BLS | Joana Ferreira |
7/11/2019 12:56:54 PM