Consumer prices in January surged more than expected over the past 12 months, indicating a worsening outlook for inflation and cementing the likelihood of substantial interest rate hikes this year.

The consumer price index, which measures the costs of dozens of everyday consumer goods, rose 7.5% compared to a year ago, the Labor Department reported Thursday.

That compared to Dow Jones estimates of 7.2% for the closely watched inflation gauge. It was the highest reading since February 1982.

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