Inflation rose at the fastest rate in more than 40 years last year, and spending on food, gasoline, housing and other necessities pressed American consumers and lifted the wage increase that many people received.

The Labor Ministry said Tuesday that its consumer price index jumped 8.5 percent in March from 12 months earlier, the biggest increase since the same period last year since December 1981. Prices were driven by narrow supply chains, strong consumer demand and disruptions in global food, and energy markets were exacerbated by Russia’s war against Ukraine.

The government report also shows that inflation rose by 1.2 percent from February to March compared to January-February by 0.8 percent.

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