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Dec 15, 2012 03:12 PM IST | Source: ft.com

US cost of living falls thanks to petrol

The cost of living in the US fell for the first time in six months in November, driven by a sharp decline in petrol prices.


The cost of living in the US fell for the first time in six months in November, driven by a sharp decline in petrol prices.


The headline consumer price index dropped 0.3 percent last month from a 0.1 gain in October. Friday's data from the labour department came in below analysts' expectations of a 0.2 percent decrease.


The core CPI - which excludes volatile energy and food prices - increased 0.1 percent in November, slightly below consensus forecasts of a 0.2 percent rise and the prior month's 0.2 percent increase.


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The US Federal Reserve has said it is not worried yet about a spike in inflation and is more focused on the other half of its dual mandate: maximum employment. Ben Bernanke, Fed chairman, said this week he would keep interest rates at close to zero until unemployment fell below 6.5 percent.

By major components, energy fell a 4.1 percent last month after edging 0.2 percent lower in October. This was mainly driven by a 7.4 percent drop in petrol prices following a 0.6 percent dip the month before. Food prices increased 0.2 percent, matching October's pace.

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