A key gauge of U.S. inflation is still rising rapidly despite a moderation in broader measures of consumer prices.
The Consumer Price Index for services less energy services jumped 0.6 percent in December, an acceleration compared with the 0.4 percent rise in November. Compared with a year ago, this metric is up seven percent, the highest rate since August of 1982.
Energy services prices were up a steep 1.5 percent compared with Novemberr and 15.6 percent compared with a year ago. Electricity prices jumped one percent and were up 14.3 percent compared with a year ago. Prices for natural gas piped into homes were up three percent in December and 19.3 percent year-over-year.
Shelter prices—which include rent and a measure that estimates the equivalent for homeowners—rose 0.8 percent and are up 7.5 percent compared with year ago. Medical services rose by 0.1 percent and are up 4.1 percent compared with a year ago.
Transportation services were up 0.2 percent month-to-month and 14.6 percent compared with 12-months earlier. Prices of auto repairs have risen sharply. Car and truck repair prices were up 2.1 percent in December after rising two percent in November. Compared with a year ago, auto repair prices are up 19.5 percent. Car insurance prices are also rising. These were up 0.6 percent in December compared with the prior month and are up 14.6 percent compared with a year ago.
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