consumer price index

How 'Chained CPI' Will Hit Your Pocketbook

Obama's new budget proposal includes changing some key inflation calculations to "chained CPI" -- a controversial shift because of the effect it may have on personal finances.

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.

Falling Food, Gas Costs Push U.S. Wholesale Prices Lower Again

U.S. wholesale prices fell for the third month in a row in December, propelled by falling food and gas costs. The drop is the latest evidence inflation is tame, which means consumers have more money to spend. Low inflation also gives the Federal Reserve more freedom to keep interest rates low.

8 Retirement Money Questions for 2013

As 2012 draws to a close, people in or nearing retirement face a stunning set of uncertainties about their finances and even basic health and retirement benefits. Here are 8 pressing money and issues that are bearing down on seniors.

Here's How Washington Is Likely to Trim Our Social Security Benefits

When Congress and President Obama make a budget deal to avoid the fiscal cliff, they're likely to use something called "chained CPI" to tweak how Social Security calculates cost of living adjustments. Here's a plain English explanation of what that means, and how it will effect your retirement.

Cheaper Gas Lowers U.S. Consumer Prices 0.3%

The seasonally adjusted consumer price index dropped 0.3 percent in November from October, the Labor Department said Friday. Gas prices fell 7.4 percent, the steepest drop in nearly four years. That offset a 0.2 percent rise in food prices.

'12 Days of Christmas' Gift List Price Tag Now Tops $107,000

From the partridge in a pear tree to the twelve drummers drumming, to get all 364 items repeated in "The Twelve Days of Christmas" carol this year, you'll pay $107,300 -- 6.1 percent more than in 2011, reveals the annual Christmas Price Index from PNC Wealth Management.

CPI Up 0.1% as Rent and Food Costs Rise, Gas Prices Fall

Rising food costs and higher rents offset a drop in gas prices last month, leaving consumer inflation all but flat in October. The consumer price index rose a seasonally adjusted 0.1 percent, after sharp 0.6 percent gains in the previous two months driven by a spike in gas prices that has since receded.

IRS Gives Your Retirement Saving a Little Boost for 2013

Saving for retirement has always been hard. But starting in 2013, the IRS is making it a little easier for you to put more money aside for your golden years. On Oct. 18, the IRS announced that it was upping the contribution limits for IRAs and 401(k) plans.

More Expensive Gas Pushes U.S. Consumer Prices Up

Higher gas costs drove up U.S. consumer prices in September for the second straight month. Outside energy, there was little sign of inflation. The Labor Department said Tuesday that the consumer price index rose a seasonally adjusted 0.6 percent last month.

Social Security Benefits to Rise by 1.7% on Low Inflation

More than 56 million Social Security recipients will see their monthly payments go up by 1.7% next year, one of the smallest increases since automatic adjustments were adopted in 1975. The cost-of-living adjustment is linked to inflation, which has been relatively low over the past year.

A Classic Way to Earn More on Your Savings Is Back

Interest rates have never been lower: That's good news for borrowers, bad news for savers unwilling to take much risk to grow their money. However, there's one safe option many people ignore that has become attractive again -- savings bonds.

5 Ways QE3 Will Affect Your Wallet

Quantitative easing is when the Fed buys securities in the hope of driving down interest rates -- ideally spurring more borrowing and spending. And this time, the Fed says it'll do it until the economy is back on track. But there are side effects to Dr. Bernanke's medicine.

Higher Gas Costs in August Push Consumer Price Index Higher

More expensive gas drove up consumer prices in August by the most in three years. But outside of energy costs, inflation was tame. The CPI rose a seasonally adjusted 0.6% last month, the first increase since March and higher gas prices accounted for 80% of the increase.

Consumer Prices Hold Steady for Third Time in Four Months

U.S. consumer prices were unchanged in July from June, as a small drop in energy costs offset slightly higher food prices. The consumer price index hasn't changed since March, evidence that the weak economy is keeping inflation in check.

Falling Gas Keeps U.S. Consumer Prices Flat in June

U.S. consumer prices were flat in June as the cost of gasoline dropped, offering some relief for cash-strapped Americans and scope for the Federal Reserve to ease monetary policy further to help the faltering recovery.

US Inflation Mild as Gas Prices Rise More Slowly

Gas prices rose more slowly in March, keeping overall U.S. inflation mild. The consumer price index rose 0.3 percent in March, the Labor Department said Friday. That's slower than February's 0.4 percent rise.

Better Inflation Gauge Shows Why Inflation's Much Worse

One of the biggest threats to your financial health is inflation, which destroys the value of your money. Now, according to the Consumer Price Index, inflation is fairly tame. But if that doesn't reflect your economic reality, the people who created the Everyday Price Index think they know why.

Why Inflation Is Higher Than It Looks

The Consumer Price Index, which measures inflation, is only as effective as the assumptions it makes -- in this case, about what you buy. If you spend more on certain things than most people, then the CPI will do a terrible job of reflecting the prices you actually pay. In particular, retirees often don't fit the CPI profile well at all.

The Hidden $1,000 Bonus Obama Put in Your Paycheck

While many Americans are hoping the fellows running for president will give them a tax cut, President Obama has already given all of us one that saves the average family about $1,000 extra a year. So how can you put that bonus to the best use?

Consumer Prices Up as Gas, Clothing Costs Rise

Consumer prices rose modestly in January on higher costs for food, gas, rent and clothing. But economists downplayed the increase, saying inflation will likely ease in the coming months as prices for raw materials level off. The consumer price index increased 0.2 percent last month, after a flat reading in December, the Labor Department said Friday.

Consumer Prices Were Unchanged in November

Consumer prices stayed flat in November, further evidence that inflation has cooled off. Energy costs dropped for the second straight month, which offset higher prices that Americans paid for food, clothes and medical services. The consumer price index was unchanged in November, the Labor Department said Friday. That followed a 0.1 percent decrease in October.

Consumer Prices Dip 0.1%, as Gas Prices Drop

Consumers paid less for gas, cars and computers last month, as overall prices dropped for the first time since June. Inflation is easing after prices rose sharply this spring. The Labor Department said Wednesday that the Consumer Price Index dropped 0.1 percent in October. A steep drop in gas prices led the decline. Food prices rose, but at the slowest pace this year.

Food and Gas Cost More in September

Consumers paid more for food and gas last month, although inflation outside those volatile categories was tame. The Labor Department says the Consumer Price Index rose 0.3% in September, below August's 0.4% rise. Excluding food and energy, so-called core prices increased 0.1%, the smallest rise since March.

Rising Food and Gas Costs Boosted CPI in April

Consumers paid more for gas and food in April, pushing inflation to its highest level in two and a half years. But so far this month, inflationary pressures have begun to ease, with the price of oil declining in recent days, along with the prices of corn and other grains.

Three Reasons to Still Own Gold (or Finally Buy Some)

Gold has had a magnificent run during the past 10 years, doubling in value since 2008 alone, and gold mania is seemingly still at full strength. But is profit taking the next move? What if you are among the majority of investors who have yet to dip a toe into the water? Is it safe to dive in?