Consumer prices rose at the fastest annual rate since 2008 in May, a bigger jump than economists had expected and one that is sure to keep inflation at the center of political and economic debate in Washington. The Consumer Price Index surged 5 percent in May from a year prior, the Labor Department said on Thursday. Economists had expected an increase of 4.7 percent. The price index rose 0.6 percent from April to May, compared with forecasts for a 0.5 percent gain. An index excluding volatile food and energy costs rose 3.8 percent from a year earlier, the briskest pace since June 1992. Prices are rising for a range of goods and services, from airfares to used cars, as a result of data quirks, supply bottlenecks and strong consumer demand. Government officials and many economists have said much of the jump is likely to fade with time as the […]