Inflation? What inflation?
Consumer prices in the Tacoma-Seattle area decreased 0.2 percent for the two months ending in December, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported this week. This marked the second consecutive month marking a decrease, with the October figure down 0.3 percent. Data for August showed no change.
Leading the downward trend were prices for apparel, recreation and natural gas service.
Prices at the end of December were up 2.2 percent over the previous 12 months.
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Among the data:
▪ Overall grocery prices were down 0.1 percent for the two months while food consumed away from home rose 0.2 percent. Alcoholic beverages iced a 0.5 percent decline.
▪ The overall cost of housing rose 0.2 percent, with rents up 0.5 percent and the equivalent of an owner’s cost up 0.9 percent.
▪ Electricity sparked a 0.1 percent rise while piped natural gas fell 15.6 percent. Household furnishings and operations dropped 0.6 percent. The overall price of apparel noted a 4.2 percent decrease.
▪ The cost of regular gasoline, down 13.9 percent over the year, marked a 0.2 percent dip for the two months.
▪ The cost of medical care rose 1.2 percent in November and December, and recreation costs dipped 1.4 percent. Education and communication likewise fell, down 0.4 percent.
C.R. Roberts: 253-597-8535