U.S. Inflation Hits Food Staples Hardest
Americans who want to stock up on food staples at the supermarket have to shell out significantly more for those items than a year ago. Increases in the consumer price index have made all sorts of goods more expensive as the long-term effects of the Covid-19 pandemic are still bearing down on global supply chains and the Russian invasion of Ukraine left markets in disarray. Recent U.S. inflation levels have been well above those in other industrialized nations, for example, in Europe, and surpassed 9 percent year-over-year in June.
The price of eggs rose by a third between June 2021 and June 2022, and butter, flour, chicken and milk also showed some of the next-biggest price increases. While in the fall of 2021, cars and red meats were products driving inflation, those prices have stabilized somewhat. Food price increases, in general, stayed above average at 10.4 percent, with shop prices that rose by 12.2 percent, outdoing food-away-from-home expenses, which only rose by 7.7 percent.
Dairy was one of the food classes most affected by inflation, becoming, on the whole, more than 13.5 percent more expensive over the course of a year. Fresh vegetables increased in price more moderately at an additional 6.5 percent.
Food and energy are considered the most volatile items in the CPI – mineral oil products especially experienced huge price swings in the course of the coronavirus pandemic. Still, price dips due to Covid-19 have been compensated and surpassed by a large margin. While the price of energy was up by 41.6 percent over the last 12 months and 24.5 percent in the year before that, it had also fallen by 12.6 percent between June 2019 and June 2020. Yet, even when subtracting the increasingly pricey food and energy categories, an annual increase of 5.9 percent still remains out of the overall CPI increase of 9.1 percent.
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ABOUT MIKE MERCURIO
Michael N. Mercurio is a leading attorney in the field of mergers and acquisitions (M&A). He serves as outside general counsel in buy-side and sell-side M&A, as well as in all business law and real estate law matters. As a strategic partner to firm clients, Mr. Mercurio regularly counsels entrepreneurial individuals and assorted entities on the many challenges, issues, and opportunities companies face throughout the business lifecycle—from start-up to eventual exit.