CPI inflation

U.S. Consumer Prices Flat in January for 2nd Month

U.S. consumer prices were flat last month, the latest sign inflation is in check. That could give the Federal Reserve leeway to continue its efforts to stimulate growth. Excluding the volatile food and energy categories, core prices rose 0.3 percent in January, pushed up by higher costs for apparel, air fares and rents.

U.S. Consumer Price Index Unchanged in December

Lower gas costs offset more expensive food and higher rents to keep a measure of U.S. consumer prices flat last month. The Labor Department said Wednesday that food prices increased 0.2 percent in December from November. Rents and airline fares also rose. Gasoline prices fell a seasonally adjusted 2.3 percent.

What Will the Fed Do With So-So Results?

The recent stream of modestly positive economic reports means the Fed probably won't take any further action to stimulate the economy at its meeting on Tuesday. But nobody is calling the economy healthy yet, and the debate over what the Fed should do next has the FOMC deeply divided.