The latest eye-opening statistic on consumer prices found that they have surged 7.9 percent year-over-year. There is now enough data to show exactly how much these red-hot high inflationary pressures are directly affecting Americans’ pocketbooks.
Even more concerning is the fact that the economic research firm believes “it’s going to get worse before it gets better.”
“U.S. inflation is at its highest level in about four decades,” Moody’s wrote. “Much of the inflation has been caused by pandemic-generated supply constraints, although Russia's invasion of Ukraine is creating additional constraints that will push inflation higher and for longer than thought before the assault began,” the report continued.
Rising Gas, Car, and Food Prices
In recent weeks, sky-high gas prices—which reached $4.32 a gallon nationwide on Tuesday, according to the AAA—have grabbed most of the headlines. But according to Ryan Sweet, one of the authors of the report, new and used vehicles have become a “poster child” for the surging inflation that is being witnessed across the country.
“Supply chain-related disruptions to chip manufacturing in the Asia Pacific [are] limiting the amount of inventory for vehicles in the U.S. and driving prices through the roof,” he told CBS.
Not to be outdone are fast-rising food prices at grocery stores. Compared to last year, pork and beef prices have increased between 14 and 20 percent.
“What’s going on in Europe has put pressure on food prices at restaurants and grocery stores, and we’re seeing consumers’ inflation expectations increase,” Sweet said. “It’s attributed to the prices we're seeing at grocery stores and at the gas station.”
Rents Surge Higher
Further hitting the wallets of Americans are rising single-family rent prices, especially in warm cities like Miami and Phoenix. “Demand for single-family rental homes is soaring, pushing prices to record highs, as Americans continue to want larger homes with outdoor spaces,” CNBC wrote.
According to a new report from CoreLogic, single-family rents rose by a record 12.6 percent year-over-year in January. That figure compares to an increase of only 3.9 percent in January 2021.
For example, in Miami, single-family rents skyrocketed by nearly 39 percent, while Orlando and Phoenix saw between 18 percent and 20 percent increases.
“Single-family-rent growth extended its record-breaking price growth streak to 10 consecutive months in January,” Molly Boesel, principal economist at CoreLogic, said in a statement.
“Rents increased across the country, and the gains were highest in the Sun Belt, which also had strong population growth last year,” she added.
Ethen Kim Lieser is a Washington state-based Science and Tech Editor who has held posts at Google, The Korea Herald, Lincoln Journal Star, AsianWeek, and Arirang TV. Follow or contact him on LinkedIn.