Consumer prices for all urban consumers rose 2.6% for the 12 months ending in March, according to the most recent numbers by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The bureau said it was the largest over-the-year increase since August 2018.
The consumer price index for March rose 0.6% from February.
Food prices advanced 3.5% over the past 12 months, while energy prices increased 13.2% over that period. Prices for all items less food and energy rose 1.6%.
Continuing the trends, prices for food at home increased 3.3% over the past 12 months. All six major grocery store food group prices advanced over the period, with increases ranging from 1.6% (dairy and related products) to 5.4% (meats, poultry, fish, and eggs).
According to the bureau, prices for food away from home rose 3.7%, as the 6.5% advance in prices for limited services meals was the largest 12-month increase since data were first collected in 1997.
Within energy, prices for gasoline rose 22.5% for the year ended March 2021, while natural gas prices increased 9.8%, and prices for electricity rose 2.5%. Fuel oil prices advanced 20.2%.