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Prices are surging. Here's what is getting more expensive

Core inflation, excluding food and energy costs, rose at the fastest rate since 1992. CNN's Christine Romans breaks down the numbers.

Posted: Jun 10, 2021 12:29 PM


By now, you probably know that everything is getting more expensive. From furniture, to used cars, to uncooked beef roasts, consumer prices have grown steadily since January as the economy recovers and Americans are spending money again.

Also sending prices higher: The ongoing pandemic has complicated supply chains, limiting supply, even as demand for goods soars.

Overall, consumer prices rose 5% last month over the previous May -- the biggest jump since the summer of 2008 and more than the predicted 4.7% increase.

Here's what you need to know about how prices are changing.

Household furnishings

Thinking of buying a new couch? Maybe some new bedding? Be prepared to pay more than usual.

The household furnishings and operations prices, which includes categories such as domestic services and furniture and bedding, increased 1.3% last month. From the outset, the change doesn't seem like much, but it marks the largest monthly increase since January 1976.

Last spring, as the pandemic brought economic chaos, sawmills closed in anticipation of a housing slump. That slump never came. Now, lumber prices are exploding as the lumber supply has tried, and failed, to keep up with demand.

Transportation

For the second-consecutive month, used car and truck prices surged. Last month, they rose 7.3%, accounting for around one-third of the overall increase in prices in May. In April, used car and truck prices rose 10%, the biggest monthly price rise since used car data was first tracked in 1953.

New cars got more expensive too, rising 1.6% in May. That's the largest 1-month increase since October 2009.

The shift to working from home coupled with job loss last year caused auto sales to plummet. In response, many dealerships closed. While the demand for cars has returned, the supply has not. Auto plants around the world have been forced to close or limit production following a recent computer chip shortage. Now, car dealers have fewer cars on their lots. The strong demand and limited supply are continuing to send prices soaring.

Travel

Americans have been stuck at home for over a year now. But with relaxed Covid restrictions and increasing rates of vaccination, travel is returning, and people are eager to get going.

Airline fare prices continued to surge, rising 7% last month. Other forms of travel transportation continued to rise. Car and truck rentals are 12.1% more expensive, and other intercity transportation now costs 2% more.

Once you get to your destination, things aren't as bad. Intracity transportation prices decreased 0.4% last month.

Food

If you're planning on buying uncooked beef roasts or beef steaks at your July 4th party this year, you might want to reconsider. The price for each rose 6.4% and 4.3% respectively last month. As an alternative, you could try frankfurters, which are 1.9% cheaper than in April, or ham, which is 2.7% cheaper. Overall, meat, poultry, fish and egg prices rose 1.3% last month.

Fortunately, however, pickle prices fell 2.1%, nonalcoholic beverage prices fell 0.5% and fruit and vegetable prices overall didn't change, so you can at least stock up on sides and drinks for your holiday celebrations.

Notoriously volatile, food prices are continuing to get more expensive in general. The cost of food increased 0.4% in May. That's the same increase as in April.

Health

Although prices are rising, there is some good news, particularly if you need the doctor.

The medical care index, which includes items such as medicinal drugs, medical equipment and healthcare services, increased 0.9% over the last 12 months. Yes, that's higher than the same point last year -- but it's the smallest increase since March 1941.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 206299

Reported Deaths: 2750
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah40280614
Washington26740248
Marion23370323
Clackamas18872235
Lane13862162
Jackson11518146
Deschutes998682
Umatilla859287
Linn557280
Klamath477478
Yamhill477379
Polk397755
Douglas385881
Malheur361163
Josephine357572
Benton325422
Jefferson236339
Coos216637
Columbia190829
Union149124
Wasco143830
Lincoln142721
Crook128923
Hood River121933
Morrow115316
Clatsop10449
Baker100915
Curry70111
Tillamook6604
Grant5487
Lake4678
Harney4309
Wallowa1945
Gilliam761
Sherman671
Wheeler351
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3806465

Reported Deaths: 63274
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles124703324444
Riverside3015434625
San Bernardino2991864811
San Diego2815313771
Orange2729225109
Santa Clara1200322187
Kern1107341402
Sacramento1075601730
Fresno1028671722
Alameda895621272
Ventura816091030
San Joaquin746291438
Contra Costa70478810
Stanislaus633871069
Tulare49799849
Monterey43831421
San Mateo42615581
San Francisco37243556
Santa Barbara34593455
Solano33673266
Merced32284477
Sonoma30825323
Imperial28801741
Placer23477299
Kings23185247
San Luis Obispo21421261
Madera16618245
Santa Cruz16232208
Marin14185229
Yolo14141212
Butte12644194
Shasta12630233
El Dorado10363116
Napa1001480
Sutter9650113
Yuba646451
San Benito610963
Lassen578424
Tehama572763
Nevada490375
Humboldt446248
Mendocino430650
Tuolumne420771
Amador373147
Lake356345
Glenn243027
Siskiyou239337
Colusa228418
Calaveras220156
Del Norte14548
Inyo143438
Mono12954
Plumas7366
Modoc5565
Mariposa4657
Trinity4225
Sierra1130
Alpine890
Unassigned400
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