PRICES: The Persistent Ogre

Some Nixon Administration economists have been having unusual trouble with their wives lately. The economists insist that figures show the pace of inflation to be slackening, but the wives reply that their weekly bills at the supermarket show no such thing. Last week the wives' viewpoint won a round. The Government announced that the consumer price index in July showed its most rapid rise since February, mostly because of that persistent ogre, climbing food costs.

The increase for all prices averaged 4.8% at an annual rate, with food accounting for almost two-thirds of the jump. Prices for fresh fruits and...

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