May 12, 2014, 6:12 a.m

SAO PAULO–The consumer price index for Sao Paulo, Brazil’s biggest city, slowed in the four weeks ended May 7, to the lowest level since December, as the impact of drought on food prices receded.

The CPI rose 0.45% in the period, compared with a rise of 0.53% in April, the country’s Fipe research foundation said Monday. It was the lowest level since the four weeks ended Dec. 7, when the index also increased 0.45%.

The reading was in line with market forecasts, which ranged between increases of 0.42% and 0.54%.

Food prices, which carry the greatest weighting in the index, picked up 0.88% in the four weeks ended May 7, compared with an increase of 1.23% in April. Food costs have increased in recent months as the country’s worst drought in decades pushed up prices of fruits and vegetables, economists said.

Transport costs increased 0.04% in the latest period, versus a 0.16% rise in April.