Baltimore-area consumers paid more for food, drink

February 18, 1994|By From Staff Reports

Baltimore-area consumers saw prices rise 0.3 percent during December and January, the U.S. Department of Labor announced yesterday.

Higher prices for food and beverages were the main culprit, the department reported. Price declines in apparel and transportation more than offset increases in housing, medical costs and others sectors.

The food and beverage index for Baltimore area urban consumers gained 2.2 percent since November, the largest two-month increase in four years, and rose 3.3 percent since January 1993. Grocery prices, which climbed 2.7 percent during the two-month period, led the consumer inflation increase.

Parallel gains in housing prices and medical care -- up 0.7 percent each -- were outweighed by declines in the cost of clothing, which fell 6.3 percent, and transportation, down 1.0 percent during the period.

The overall urban consumers' price index for Baltimore stood at 143.8 in January, which means that a basket of goods and services that cost $100 in the 1982-1984 period, cost $143.80 last month.

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