By Nick Dobbins
The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.6 percent in May on a seasonally adjusted basis after rising 0.8 percent in April, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. The index for used cars and trucks continued to rise sharply, increasing 7.3 percent in May. This increase accounted for about one-third of the seasonally adjusted all items increase. The food index increased 0.4 percent in May, the same increase as in April. The energy index was unchanged, with a decline in the gasoline index again offsetting increases in the electricity and natural gas indices. The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.7 percent in May after increasing 0.9 percent in April. Many of the same indices continued to increase, including used cars and trucks, household furnishings and operations, new vehicles, airline fares, and apparel. The index for medical care fell slightly, one of the few major component indices to decline in May.
Over the last 12 months the all items index increased 5.0 percent before seasonal adjustment; this was the largest 12-month increase since a 5.4-percent increase for the period ending August 2008. The all items index has been trending up every month since January, when the 12-month change was 1.4 percent. The index for all items less food and energy rose 3.8 percent, the largest 12-month increase since the period ending June 1992. The energy index rose 28.5 percent, and the food index increased 2.2 percent.