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Data: Bureau of Labor Statistics; Chart: Axios Visuals

The Consumer Price Index rose 0.4% in December, the biggest increase since August, largely because of rising gasoline prices, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported.

Details: The increase "was driven by an 8.4% increase in the gasoline index, which accounted for more than 60% of the overall increase," BLS said.

  • The core index, which strips out volatile food and energy prices, rose 0.1% for the month after rising 0.2% in the previous month.

Yes, but: For the year, CPI rose just 1.4% for the 12 months ending December, a slightly larger increase than the 1.2% rise in November.

  • That was slightly more than expected but still well below the Fed's 2% inflation target. (The Fed also prefers to track the personal consumption expenditures metric, which has historically shown lower readings than CPI.)

Go deeper

Jan 28, 2021 - Health

Drug prices in the U.S. are much higher than in other countries

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Prescription drug prices in the U.S. are more than 256% higher than other 32 other countries, with the gap driven by brand-name drugs, a new report by nonpartisan RAND Corporation shows.

The big picture: Drug spending in the U.S. jumped by 76% between 2000 and 2017, and the costs are expected to only increase over the next decade, per the report.

McCarthy jokes about hitting Pelosi with gavel if he becomes Speaker, in new audio

Kevin McCarthy. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) can be heard saying "it would be hard not to hit" House Speaker Nancy Pelosi with the speaker's gavel if Republicans retake the House in 2022 and he becomes speaker, according to new audio posted to Twitter by a Main Street Nashville reporter.

Driving the news: McCarthy made the comments during a fundraising event in Tennessee, as he was handed an oversized gavel by members of the Tennessee congressional delegation, reports CNN.

Updated 3 hours ago - World

U.S. and U.K. blame Iran for drone strike on oil tanker

Britain's Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab. Photo: Sameer Al-DOUMY / AFP

Secretary of State Antony Blinken and British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said on Sunday that the United States and United Kingdom, respectively, now believe Iran was likely responsible for last week's drone strike on an oil tanker in the Arabian sea.

Why it matters: The United States and Britain now join Israel in accusing Tehran of being behind the July 29 attack off the coast of Oman. Iran has denied involvement.