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Shocking Inflation Numbers

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It's not good news for the US economy as prices for US consumers jumped 6.2% in October compared with a year earlier as surging costs for food, gas, and housing left Americans grappling with the highest inflation rate since 1990. The year-over-year increase in the consumer price index exceeded the 5.4% rise in September, the Labor Department reported.

The Wall Street Journal notes it's the fifth month in a row where the increase was north of 5%. From September to October, prices jumped 0.9%, the highest month-over-month increase since June.

Energy costs soared 4.8% just from September to October, with gasoline, natural gas, and heating oil surging for the same reason that many other commodities have grown more expensive: Demand has risen sharply as Americans are driving and flying more, but supplies haven't kept up. Plus, the Energy Department forecasts heating bills will be up 54% this winter over last.

There is some light in the tunnel. Economists still expect inflation to slow once supply bottlenecks are cleared and Americans shift more of their consumption back to pre-pandemic norms.

As COVID-19 fades, consumers should spend more on travel, entertainment, and other services and less on goods such as cars, furniture, and appliances, which would reduce pressure on supply chains. But no one knows how long that might take, though predictions skew pessimistic. Goldman Sachs economists said, "The inflation overshoot will likely get worse before it gets better.

Food Inflation In America - (Bureau Of Labor And Statistics)

Price Increase From September 2021 vs September 2020

Ground Beef 10.8% 

Bacon 19.3%

Eggs 12.6%

Apple 7.8%

Inflation In America - (Bureau Of Labor And Statistics)

Price Increase From September 2021 vs September 2020

Regular Gas 43.3%

Electricity 5.2%

Used Cars 24.4%

Hotels 19.8%

Apparel 3.4%