Inflation is soaring with no end in sight. The Consumer Price Index rose 0.8% in November, marking a 6.8% increase in inflation YoY. According to the Labor Department, this is the fastest pace of inflation since June 1982. In addition, Core-CPI rose 0.5% last month, amounting to a 4.9% annual increase, the quickest advancement since 1991.
Energy prices alone have spiked 33.3% in the past year, and gasoline prices are up 58.1%. Over the past 12 months, food and energy prices rose at the most rapid pace in 13 years. Shelter costs, amounting to one-third of CPI, rose 3.8% on an annual basis. This level has not been seen since the 2007 housing crisis wreaked havoc on the US real estate market.
Despite pay increases of 4.8% this year, real hourly earnings decreased 1.9% over the past 12-months. Service costs rose at the fastest pace since 2007 as well, advancing 3.4% over the past year. Apparel costs are also up by 5% since last November. Everywhere you look, prices are drastically rising.
Overall, the cost of living is astronomical. Basic necessities such as food and shelter price increases have caused more middle-class Americans to begin living paycheck to paycheck. The Federal Reserve claimed it would step in if inflation reached an unsustainable level. A 6.8% increase is unsustainable, inflation is not transitory, and neither the government nor the Fed has made a valid effort to control this growing problem.