VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — This year, the U.S. hit 12-month yearly inflation increases not seen since the 1980s.
While some new data may suggest rising inflation rates are cooling down, economic experts suggest other key figures paint a different reality for the nation’s economy.
Wednesday, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics released the latest Consumer Price Index (CPI), showing a 0.3% inflation rate increase for the “all items” category for the month of April. In March, that number came in as a 1.2% increase. This drastic drop, however, doesn’t mean the rate of inflation is slowing down.
“On the surface, the report looked like it was a little better… maybe the headline number is a little better. But the core Consumer Price Index, excluding gas and food, was worse,” Andrew Root, an assistant professor at Regent University said.
The latest CPI listed the “all items less food and energy” category as a 0.6% increase for the month of April, which Root explained means inflation rates are still hitting different sectors of the economy now, too.
“There are some things that are coming down, but the core elements that people pay for, the price is accelerated -- your rent, the cost of your restaurant bill, the things you touch and feel every single day,” Root said.
The year-over-year inflation rate now sits at 8.3% for the country.
Combining this with other economic factors such as rising interest rates, Root questioned whether the recession that many fear is already here.
“If you look at stock market, used car prices, what’s happening with inflation, federal reserve raising rates, all those point to the possibility we’re in a recession right now,” Root said.