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Retailers, Restaurants Raise Prices to Offset U.S. Labor Costs

Retailers and restaurants are raising consumer prices to help compensate for higher labor costs, which increased the most in almost three years during the second quarter.

Fifty-three percent of these companies with annual sales of $10 million to $500 million have lifted prices during the last 12 months, up from 32 percent a year ago, according to a quarterly survey by Barlow Research Associates. This comes as U.S. inflation excluding food and energy costs accelerated at an annual pace of 1.8 percent in July, the biggest such gain in more than a year, according to Labor Department data released yesterday.