US Annual Inflation Falls to Slowest Pace in Over a Year

Consumer inflation in the United States slipped in December to the lowest level in over a year, government data showed on Thursday, signaling the worst of red-hot price increases may be over.

As American households struggled with decades-high inflation over the last year, the Federal Reserve hiked its benchmark lending rate at a pace unheard of since the 1980s in hopes of cooling the world’s biggest economy.

On the back of the aggressive campaign, the consumer price index (CPI) rose 6.5 percent from a year ago last month, the smallest increase since October 2021, said the Labor Department.

The annual figure is also down from November’s 7.1 percent spike.

“The index for gasoline was by far the largest contributor to the monthly all items decrease,” said the Labor Department in a statement.

This more than offset increases in the shelter component, the department added, with elevated rents still boosting consumer costs.

Between November and December, CPI dipped 0.1 percent, the first time in around two years it logged a month-on-month contraction, data showed.