Consumer prices edged up 0.3 percent in November and consumer spending rose a moderate 0.5 percent, the government said yesterday.

The increase in the Labor Department's consumer price index followed a 0.4 percent increase in October. It brought inflation for 1987, with just one month to go, to an annual rate of 4.7 percent.

That's more than four times the minuscule 1.1 percent increase of 1986 but still in the range considered moderate by most economists.

Economists said the recent tumble in oil prices should keep inflation well under control into early 1988 -- despite expected higher prices due to declines in the value of the dollar, which make imported goods more expensive.

Meanwhile, the Commerce Department reported that consumer spending increased 0.5 percent in November, the first full month since the Oct. 19 stock market plunge.

The rise followed declines of 0.2 percent in September and October and was the largest increase since a 1.5 percent rise in August.

"I expect consumer spending to be sluggish in December. But, overall, we're looking for a consumer who is a little more cautious but who is not afraid to spend money," said David Wyss, chief financial economist with Data Resources Inc., a private Lexington, Mass., forecasting firm.

The Commerce Department also reported that personal income fell 0.4 percent in November, its steepest plunge in 15 years. But that decline was due entirely to a drop in farm subsidy payments. Without the swing in farm incomes, personal income would have risen 0.7 percent in November.

The combined data from yesterday's reports provided further evidence that the stock market collapse had not yet rippled through the rest of the economy, at least through November, most analysts suggested.

At the White House, presidential spokesman Marlin Fitzwater hailed the report on consumer prices, noting that it followed a report that wholesale prices had remained steady in November.

"These reports demonstrate that the rate of inflation remains under control, despite the increases experienced at the beginning of the year," Fitzwater said.

The rise in the consumer price index included an 0.8 percent jump in energy costs. But economists suggested this rise would be short-lived. More recent declines in oil prices, including sharp drops this week, should help cushion the domestic inflationary impact of a weaker dollar, they suggested.

"Energy prices will be down over the next few months, that is clear," said Lawrence Chimerine, chairman of the Wefa Group, a Philadelphia forecasting service. "We could even have negative inflation figures in January. We are getting import inflation {caused by the declining dollar} but that is modest."

Gasoline prices rose 0.3 percent, after falling 0.3 percent in October. Home heating oil costs were up 0.5 percent, while natural gas and electricity prices jumped 1.4 percent.

Food costs rose 0.1 percent after a 0.3 percent rise in October.