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July 12, 2018

Consumer prices have been creeping upwards over the past year, pushing inflation to its highest point in more than six years, The Associated Press reported Thursday.

The Labor Department said that inflation is up 2.9 percent compared to a year ago, even though the consumer price index only jumped a modest 0.1 percent since last month. That's the largest annual gain since 2012, which for some products has offset one-third of the benefit of last year's GOP tax cut bill.

Officials indicated last month that the Federal Reserve would raise interest rates two more times this year, which economists expect could curb inflation without undercutting growth too much. The changes could affect wages, which, adjusted for inflation, have declined slightly this year.

Housing costs jumped 3.4 percent over the last year, reports AP, while auto insurance prices have increased 7.6 percent since last year. Medical expenses, cars, lumber, some appliances, and shipping prices have also gone up, but none quite so much as gas, which has skyrocketed 24.3 percent. The good news is that at least furniture, clothes, and air travel prices have stayed steady, and it looks like gas prices are coming back down slightly. Read more at The Associated Press. Summer Meza

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