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Highest Inflation Rate Increase Since 1981 as Consumer Price Index Jumps 8.5% in March

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U.S. inflation jumped to 8.5% in March from the same month a year ago, according to the Consumer Price Index released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.  It is the highest increase in the inflation rate since 1981.

The Consumer Price Index increased 1.2 percent in March on a seasonally adjusted basis after rising 0.8 percent in February.

Increases in the indexes for gasoline, shelter, and food were the largest contributors to the seasonally adjusted all items increase.

The food index increased one percent in March as the food at home index increased 1.5 percent over the month. All six major grocery store food group indexes increased in March.

The largest increase was for other food at home, which increased two percent over the month. The index for fruits and vegetables rose 1.5 percent following a 2.3 percent increase in February.

The index for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs increased one percent in March, while the index for cereals and bakery products rose 1.5 percent, and the index for nonalcoholic beverages increased 1.2 percent over the month. The dairy and related products index also increased 1.2 percent in March.