SMALL RISE: U.S. consumer prices rose a seasonally adjusted 0.1 percent in May, as higher energy costs partly offset cheaper food. Over the past year, prices have risen just 1.4 percent.
STRIPPED DOWN: Excluding volatile food and gas costs, core prices rose 0.2 percent in May from April, the Labor Department reported Tuesday. Core prices are up 1.7 percent over the past 12 months.
IMPACT: Slow economic growth and high unemployment have kept wages from rising quickly. That's made it harder for retailers and other firms to raise prices. But it has helped consumers increase spending this year.