The B.L.S. said the overall flat index reflected a decline in the energy index offset by slight increases in the indexes for food and for all items less food and energy.
The food index rose 0.1% in February after climbing 0.2% in January. Among the major grocery store food groups, the sharpest gain was posted in the index for meats, poultry, fish, and eggs, which rose 0.4% to 202.5. Within the category, the indexes for pork and for eggs both rose 2.6%, the B.L.S. said.
The food at home index rose 0.1% in February to 214.6. The increase followed a 0.4% gain in January, which marked the sharpest increase in the category since September 2008, the B.L.S. said. Meanwhile, the index for other food at home rose 0.2% to 191.2.
The index for cereals and bakery products, which fell 0.5% in January, finished steady at 251.4.
The indexes for both fruits and vegetables, and for dairy and related products, fell 0.1%, while the index for nonalcoholic beverages eased 0.4%.