75.7 F
Fort Worth
Wednesday, October 21, 2020
Banking US consumer prices fall 0.2 percent in August

US consumer prices fall 0.2 percent in August

Other News

Closing prices for crude oil, gold and other commodities

The Associated Press Benchmark U.S. crude oil for September delivery rose 31 cents to settle at $41.60 a barrel Monday. Brent crude...

Trump to discuss energy, tour oil rig, raise money in Texas

By DARLENE SUPERVILLE Associated PressWASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump will shift his focus to American energy dominance during a stop in...

Basic Energy Services makes organizational changes

Fort Worth-based Basic Energy Services, Inc. (OTCQX: BASX) in late May announced the implementation of changes to the organizational structure of the...

Texas oil producers were cutting output before Railroad Commission chose not to, Commissioner Christi Craddick says

By Cassandra PollockMay 12, 2020 Texas Railroad Commissioner Christi Craddick on Tuesday doubled down on the agency’s recent decision...
Robert Francis
Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

MARTIN CRUTSINGER, AP Economics Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. consumer prices edged down in August, the first monthly drop since the spring of 2013, as gasoline, airline tickets and clothing prices all fell. It was the latest evidence that inflation remains under control.

Consumer prices edged down 0.2 percent last month following a tiny 0.1 percent gain in July, the Labor Department reported Wednesday. It was the first decline since a similar 0.2 percent drop in April 2013. Core prices, which exclude energy and food, were unchanged in August, the first time there hasn’t been an increase since October 2010.

Over the past 12 months, overall prices and core prices are both up a modest 1.7 percent. These gains are well within the 2 percent annual increase for inflation that the Federal Reserve considers optimal.

Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, said that the drop in prices would give a “powerful boost” to “doves” on the Fed, officials who argue that at the moment unemployment and weak economic growth are bigger problems than the threat of future inflation.

Analysts believe that inflation will remain moderate in coming months, helped by falling energy prices. AAA reports that the nationwide average for a gallon of gasoline is down to $3.38, down eight cents from a month ago and 14 cents lower than a year ago.

The recent decline in gasoline prices is one reason that economists are optimistic that consumer spending will show solid gains in the coming months. A drop in gasoline prices means consumers will have more to spend on other items.

For August, energy prices fell 2.6 percent, the second straight monthly decline. Gasoline costs were down 4.1 percent in August after a smaller 0.3 percent July drop.

Food costs edged up 0.2 percent in August following a 0.4 percent July. Over the past 12 months, food costs have risen 2.7 percent reflecting drought in California that has cut into crop yields.

The cost of new vehicles and alcoholic beverages were up in August but the price of airline fares, recreation, home furnishings, clothing and used cars were all down.

The report on consumer prices was released as the Federal Reserve wrapped up two days of discussions Wednesday on what to do with interest rates.

The Fed seeks to promote maximum employment and stable prices, which the Fed defines as inflation rising at a moderate 2 percent annual rate. Price increases measured by the Fed’s favorite inflation gauge have been running below 2 percent for the past two years.

That has given the central bank the leeway to keep interest rates ultra-low in an effort to combat an anemic economic recovery. However, some critics say the Fed needs to start raising rates in coming months to make sure its prolonged period of easy credit policies does not set the stage for future inflation problems.

 

Latest News

Nonprofits invited to apply for $1.3 million in funding

From the City of Fort Worth: Social service agencies are invited to submit program...

Halliburton: 3Q Earnings Snapshot

HOUSTON (AP) _ Halliburton Co. (HAL) on Monday reported a third-quarter loss of $17 million, after reporting a profit in the same...

First Cash Financial Services: 3Q Earnings Snapshot

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) _ First Cash Financial Services Inc. (FCFS) on Wednesday reported third-quarter profit of $15.1 million.The Fort Worth-based company...

BOK Financial: 3Q Earnings Snapshot

TULSA, Okla. (AP) _ BOK Financial Corp. (BOKF) on Wednesday reported third-quarter profit of $154 million.The Tulsa, Oklahoma-based bank said it had...

Texas Capital: 3Q Earnings Snapshot

DALLAS (AP) _ Texas Capital Bancshares Inc. (TCBI) on Wednesday reported third-quarter earnings of $57.1 million.The bank, based in Dallas, said it...