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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.

Why Our Catastrophic Drought Won't Bankrupt U.S. Farmers

If you've been worried that this year's drought will put farmers out of business and leave Americans short of the staple crops they need to survive, relax. In its latest farm income forecast, the Department of Agriculture is reporting that U.S. farmers will make more money in 2012 than ever before, even as the country is facing its worst drought in 50 years. Here's how:

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.

Your Summer Forecast: High Temperatures, Higher Food Prices

That unrelenting sun that's been scorching your lawn and straining your air conditioner? It's about to send your grocery bill soaring too. Record-breaking heat and reduced rainfall are wreaking havoc on the corn crop -- and corn goes into practically everything we eat.

Chick-fil-A's CEO on Rising Costs, Family Values

For its Cow Appreciation Day Friday, Chick-fil-A gave away free sandwiches to customers who come in wearing cow costumes. We talked with CEO Dan Cathy about a herd of other issues including rising food costs, industry trends, the economy and how his values affect the company's bottom line.

Food, Clothing Prices Should Fall As Commodities Tumble

Over the past year, the prices of many commodities have risen at record paces to record highs. But recently, those prices have begun to plunge, and consumers should begin to see the effects of those declines fairly soon, in the form of less-expensive groceries and clothing.

Syngenta: An Agribusiness Stock That's Flourishing

Once unknown to most U.S. investors, Syngenta has blossomed as one of the world's leading agribusiness companies, with a hefty 19% global share in the multibillion-dollar crop-protection market and 11% in seed production. Its stock is near a record high.

Inflation Warning: Should the Fed Raise Interest Rates?

It's no surprise that consumer prices are rising -- the prices of commodities from cotton to copper are near record levels, thanks to shrinking supplies and rising demand worldwide. The question is whether the Fed will raise rates to combat this price inflation -- and whether it should.

Ethanol, the Next Generation: Corn Is Out, Cellulose Is In

It has become clear to politicians and scientists that corn-based ethanol isn't the solution for creating a home-grown fuel source. Enter "cellulosic ethanol," made from wood chips, weeds or algae: Is this the fuel of the future? A company called Mascoma is gearing up to prove it is.

Squeezing Seniors: Social Security Stays Flat as Prices Rise

Besides the unemployed, nobody is getting hurt worse in this economy than seniors. Prices on many commodities are skyrocketing, but the Consumer Price Index, which is the yardstick used to adjust Social Security for inflation, is virtually unchanged.

Meat Prices Highest Since 1980s - and Still Rising

The burger or bacon you put on your plate is likely at its most expensive since the 1980s, and it%u2019s only going to get pricier. The surging price of corn futures - which allow farmers to lock in the price of the grain for an extended period - means few farmers are expanding their herds, Bloomberg News reported. Meat prices have risen 14% this year, driving up U.S. retail costs, and the rally is not over yet. The surging price of corn futures - which allow farmers to lock in the price of the grain for an extended period - means few farmers are expanding their herds, Bloomberg News reported. Meat prices have risen 14% this year, and the rally is not over yet.

Corn Industry Wants to Make Corn Syrup Sound a Little Sweeter

The corn refining industry is seeking to make one of the most common ingredients in American food sound a little more palatable to health-conscious consumers and food companies. The Corn Refiners Associations filed a petition on Tuesday with the Food and Drug Administration to change the name of high fructose corn syrup to "corn sugar", The Wall Street Journal reported.

'Fructose-Slurping' Cancer Could Sour the Soda Business

Soda and processed-food makers insist that all sugars are the same. Yet with studies linking high fructose corn syrup to obesity, diabetes and, most recently, pancreatic cancer, big brands are quietly backing away from using the corn-based sweetener.

Russia's Heatwave Means Higher U.S. Food Prices

Record heat in Russia is hurting its wheat crop, sending the grain's price soaring. This may drive up corn and soybeans prices too, while the cost of coffee and cocoa, chocolate's key ingredient, are rising as well. Get ready to pay more for food.

Famed Investor Jim Rogers Says Food Shortages Coming

A severe food shortage is on its way, according to famed investor Jim Rogers. Food inventories are the lowest in decades and "[m]any farmers cannot get loans to buy fertilizer now, even though we have big shortages developing," he said.

All Dow 10,000s Aren't Created Equal

It's no wonder stock market cheerleaders don't want us to look at 2009's Dow 10K in terms of our purchasing power: The results are sobering. For example, 1999's Dow 10K bought 8,300 gallons of gasoline, but 2009's version is worth only 4,000.