WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced that inflation on all items increased 7.1% for the 12 months ending in November — down from 7.7% in October. The shelter index rose 7.1%, the largest contributor to the monthly all-items increase. The energy index rose 13.1% over the last year, and the food-at-home index increased 12%. Real wages fell by 3%.
Independent Women’s Forum (IWF) produces a monthly Inflation Tracker on popular household items that women purchase.
Patrice Onwuka, director of the Center for Economic Opportunity (CEO) at IWF, issued the following statement:
“This is the second year in a row that inflation is robbing American families of a merry Christmas and jolly holiday season. Parents will spend significantly more for gifts and presents as well as meals and traditions. Prices on toys are up 5.1%, girls’ clothing is up 5.2%, baby clothes are up about 4%, and prices for balls and sports equipment are 3.3% higher. Grocery bills are still too high at 12%, and dining out at 9% more. For families struggling to make ends meet, inflation has squeezed discretionary purchases like toys and family outings out of their budgets.
“Housing price inflation is the big story in these numbers. Rents are up over 7% from this time last year, making it more difficult to keep a roof over one’s head as we enter the cold winter season. This summer, the average rent nationwide hit a record at 24% higher than it was two years ago. Housing costs are truly becoming unbearable for many households, even as they deal with inflation on other goods and services.
“Reckless federal spending fueled inflation and forced the Federal Reserve to take aggressive actions that are freezing the housing market and cooling the overall economy. The next Congress can complement the Fed’s inflation-fighting interest rate hikes by prioritizing spending reductions, tax hikes, and regulatory rollbacks.”