Consumer prices jumped 0.7 percent in February from January, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports. The increase was fueled by a 9.1 percent surge in gasoline prices. Gas prices alone accounted for about two-thirds of the overall rise, MarketWatch says.
The 0.7 percent increase was the largest for any one month since June 2009. Economists think, though, that the upward pressure on inflation eased this month. As Bloomberg News writes, there has been a "retreat in fuel expenses this month."
Reuters says the news doesn't change the overall picture: "Details of the report on Friday showed no sign of a pickup in inflation to trouble the Federal Reserve. ... Fed officials are likely to dismiss the gasoline-driven jump in price pressures as temporary when they meet next week to evaluate the economy."