BIDENFLATION: Inflation up 7.5 percent over last year, marking highest annual gain since 1982

The cost of just about everything has gone up over the past twelve months, with new data showing no end in sight for Americans' inflation woes.

Jarryd Jaeger Vancouver, BC

The cost of just about everything has gone up over the past twelve months, with new data showing no end in sight for Americans' inflation woes.

Across the United States, people have been dealing with the rising cost of living brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and ensuing government policies.

The Consumer Price Index has surged over the past year, with other indices showing similar trends.  

On Thursday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released the January 2022 Consumer Price Index. It showed that the "all items index" rose 7.5 percent before seasonal adjustments in 12 months ending in January, marking the highest annual gain since February of 1982.

The report also showed that when the often volatile food and energy products are removed, the inflation rose 6 percent over the last 12 months, also the highest annual gain since 1982.

The food and energy indices rose 7 percent and 27 percent, respectively, with gasoline up 40 percent over the last 12 months. In January alone, food and energy both rose by 0.9 percent, with gasoline actually falling by .8 percent, the first decrease seen in months, following a 1.3 percent rise in December.  

Shelter rose 4.4 percent over the last 12 months, which according to CNBC, "could keep inflation readings elevated in the future."

The combination of higher food and housing prices "underlines our view that a rapid cyclical acceleration in inflation is underway and, with labor market conditions exceptionally tight, it is unlikely to abate any time soon," wrote Andrew Hunter, senior US economist at Capital Economics.

While inflation is up, unemployment is still down. Data shows jobless claims shrunk to 223,000 in the first week of February 2022 , compared to over 800,000 the same time last year.

In a press conference on Thursday, President Biden acknowledged that inflation continues to impact Americans, and touted his Build Back Better plan as the way out.

"Inflation is up," Biden said, before providing an anecdote of growing up in a family where "when the price of gas went up, you felt it."

"The fact is," he continued, "if we're able to do the things I'm talking about here, it'll bring down the cost for average families."

"We're in a situation now where you should have peace of mind," Biden said in an attempt to reassure Americans. "I know food prices are up, and we're working to bring them down."


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