Surging costs of fuel, housing, and food were major contributors to high inflation last month
The U.S. annual inflation rate climbed to 9.1 percent in June, topping the market estimate of 8.8 percent and May’s annual rate of 8.6 percent. This was the highest level since November 1981.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the consumer price index (CPI) rose 1.3 percent month-over-month. The monthly inflation was also higher than economists’ expectations of 1.1 percent.
The core inflation rate, which removes the volatile food and energy sectors, eased to 5.9 percent. But this was higher than the forecasts of 5.7 percent. On a monthly basis, the core inflation rose at a higher-than-expected pace of 0.7 percent.
Food prices soared 10.4 percent, while the energy index advanced 41.6 percent.
Nearly every food item, except uncooked beef steak, was more expensive last month. Beef and veal rose 8.2 percent, pork surged 9 percent, chicken soared 18.6 percent, and ham increased 9.6 percent.
Eggs spiked 33.1 percent, milk rose 16.4 percent, fruits and vegetables jumped 8.1 percent, and coffee swelled 15.8 percent.
On the energy front, fuel oil exploded by 98.5 percent. Gasoline surged 59.9 percent, electricity costs picked up 13.7 percent, and propane and kerosene edged up 26.1 percent.
New vehicles surged 11.4 percent, used cars and trucks jumped 7.1 percent, apparel increased 5.2 percent, and shelter climbed 5.6 percent. Medical care commodities and services swelled 5.5 percent and 4.8 percent, respectively.
“Today’s shockingly high consumer price inflation number does not bode well for our country’s economic outlook,” Desmond Lachman, economist and senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, told The Epoch Times in an email.
It makes it likely that the Fed will keep raising interest rates and decreasing its “bloated balance sheet” aggressively, he added.
By Andrew Moran