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U.S. Inflation Quickens to 8.5%, Ratcheting Up Pressure on Fed

  • Consumer prices rose 1.2% from February, half due to gasoline
  • Food, shelter, airfares stay elevated in broad-based gain
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U.S. Inflation Rises at Fastest Annual Pace Since 1981
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U.S. consumer prices rose in March by the most since late 1981, underscoring the painfully high cost of living and reinforcing pressure on the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates even more aggressively.

The consumer price index increased 8.5% from a year earlier following a 7.9% annual gain in February, Labor Department data showed Tuesday. The widely followed inflation gauge rose 1.2% from a month earlier, the biggest gain since 2005.