U.S. consumer prices edged up slightly in September, with the overall increase held back by a third straight monthly decline in gasoline prices. The tiny gain was the latest evidence that inflation remains dormant.
The Labor Department says consumer prices rose 0.1% in September after having falling 0.2% in August. Core prices, which exclude volatile food and energy, also rose 0.1% after no gain in August.
Over the past 12 months, overall prices are up 1.7% and core prices are up a similar 1.7%. Both increases are well below the 2% target for inflation set by the Federal Reserve. The absence of inflationary pressures has allowed the central bank to keep interest rates at record lows to boost the economy.