Consumer price inflation in the United States, boosted by soaring fuel prices, hit its highest level in more than 16 years in March, official statistics show released on Tuesday.
The consumer price index (CPI) rose 1.2% last month, the highest figure since September 2005, after +0.8% in February, the Labor Department said.
Over one year, its rise reached 8.5%, the highest since December 1981, after +7.9% a month earlier.
Economists polled by Reuters on average expected prices to rise 1.2% month-on-month and 8.4% year-on-year.
March marks the sixth consecutive month of inflation above 6%, which could lead the Federal Reserve to accelerate the raising of its interest rates next month.
Inflation excluding energy and food products (core CPI) however slowed to 0.3% in March against 0.5% in February, but it reached 6.5% on an annual basis.
The consensus gave it at 0.5% month-on-month and 6.6% year-on-year.