Prices on consumer goods heading down, Labor Department reports

Consumer goods getting cheaper The seasonally adjusted rate of change in the price of consumer goods dropped in May by 0.2 percent, bucking its recent trend and making consumer spending easier on the American public, according to figures released Thursday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Energy prices led the way among the main categories measured in the Bureau’s consumer price index, falling by 2.9 percent in May. The Bureau said that this marked an acceleration of the 1.4 percent decrease seen the month before, and that gasoline in particular was becoming cheaper, falling in price by 5.2 percent.

Food, on the other hand, stayed at roughly the same price level as before, according to the Bureau’s statistics. While food prices had been rising during March and April, their unchanged levels could spur hope among consumers and analysts alike that this part of the index may be beginning to dip.

Experts say that falling consumer prices could provide the impetus necessary to drive U.S. consumer spending up toward its pre-recession levels, which would be a powerful indicator of the economy’s improvement.