Mixed data from the United States


Prices in the United States declined in August as cheaper gasoline helped keep inflation below the objective of Federal Reserve policy makers. 

The consumer-price index dropped 0.1 percent, the first decline since January, after rising 0.1 percent in July, figures showed Wednesday.The so-called core measure, which strips out often-volatile fuel and food costs, rose 0.1 percent for a second month.

Goods prices declined, while services barely rose. A 15 percent plunge in energy costs over the past 12 months and a rising dollar are acting as a brake on inflation that the Fed views as temporary. Central bankers, who conclude a two-day meeting on Thursday, will have to weigh restrained prices,uneasy financial markets and a resilient U.S. labor market as they consider raising interest rates.