United States: Inflation drops in March amid lower energy prices
April 16, 2013
In March, consumer prices fell 0.2% over the previous month in seasonally adjusted terms, which contrasted the 0.7% rise recorded in February. The result came in below market expectations, which saw prices remaining unchanged. The print mainly reflects lower prices for energy, in particular for gasoline, as well as for apparel.
Building on the monthly drop, annual inflation slowed from 2.0% in February to 1.5% in March, reaching the lowest rate since July 2012. Meanwhile, the core inflation index, which excludes food and energy, exhibited a moderate increase, adding 0.1% over the previous month. The figure came in slightly below February's 0.2% rise and market expectations of a 0.2% increase. As a result, annual core inflation inched down from 2.0% in February to 1.9%.
Annual average inflation over the previous 12 months inched down to 1.8% from 1.9% in February. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast participants expect inflation to average 1.9% in 2013, which is down 0.1 percentage points from last month's forecast. For 2014, the panel anticipates average inflation to rise to 2.2%.