Commerce Report: Prices Rose 6.2% in September

    U.S. consumers watching prices continue to rise steadily didn’t get any relief from a report released Friday from the U.S Commerce Department.

    A measure of inflation that is closely monitored by the Federal Reserve remained painfully high last month, the latest sign that prices for most goods and services in the United States are still rising steadily.

    That report showed that prices rose 6.2% in September from 12 months earlier, the same year-over-year rate as in August, the Associated Press reported.

    Not counting food and energy costs, core prices rose 5.1% last month from a year earlier. That’s also faster than the 4.9% annual increase in August, though below a four-decade high of 5.4% reached in February, according to the AP.

    It doesn’t seem to be deterring American consumers, though. The report also showed that consumers spent more last month, signalling Americans’ willingness to keep spending in the face of high prices. Consumer spending increased 0.6% from August to September, or 0.3% after accounting for price increases.

    The persistence of high inflation — near the worst in four decades — has increased pressure on the Federal Reserve to keep raising its key short-term interest rate to try fight the rise of inflation. Last month, the Fed raised its key rate by a substantial three-quarters of a point for a third straight time, and next week it’s expected to do so for a fourth time.