(BCN) — Inflation in the central Bay Area shrank by half a percent between June and August, but it was up 5.7 percent from a year earlier, according to data released Tuesday by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The data reflects inflation as measured by the Consumer Price Index for Alameda, Contra Costa, San Francisco, San Mateo and Marin counties.

Nationwide, inflation was up 8.3 percent from a year earlier, higher than expected. The higher-than-expected results may prompt the Federal Reserve, the nation’s central bank, to raise a key interest rate to curb the rising prices. That may cause a recession.

Regionally, inflation rose at 8.1 percent year-over-year in the Western U.S. The two-month decline in prices in the central Bay Area were driven largely by lower gasoline prices, economist David Kong with the Bureau of Labor Statistics said Wednesday.

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But energy prices are highly volatile, and the decline may not be a trend, Kong said. Kong also noted that rents for residential property in the central Bay Area rose less than rents nationwide.

Central Bay Area rents were up 3.5 percent year-over-year compared to 7.8 percent nationally.

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