CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Consumers are still feeling the pinch of inflation from the gas pump to the grocery store.
Inflation last month rose at a higher rate than expected, indicating that it may take some time to see relief. According to the Consumer Price Index, which measures the cost of a broad range of consumer goods and services, inflation in January rose 0.5 percent following a 0.1-percent increase in December.
The Consumer Price Index rose 6.4% over the past 12 months, both of those numbers were higher than predicted. Major culprits of the increase are higher prices for shelter, food and energy.
Chicopee resident Tricia Hennessey told 22News her family has been impacted by the high costs, “I have a cousin who’s disabled, he only has a limited income and the rent keeps going up. He’s got to go to other places to find ways to pay his rent.”
Mark Teed, Senior Vice President at Raymond James in Springfield, told 22News that the spike in inflation rates seen over the past few years contributes to the current burden on budgets, “Inflation becomes cumulative, unless it goes down 11-percent, now it starts at the new higher level. If it’s up 6-percent this year, even though it’s down from 11, it’s still up 17 percent over two years.”
Even though the decrease has been slow, consumers are optimistic that prices will continue to drop in the near future. The report did show that costs went down for used cars and trucks, medical care, and airline fares.
“I’m just hopeful that things will get better for everybody, we all need a break,” said Hennessey.
In the meantime, it is expected that the feds will continue to raise interest rates.