CPI at 1.6% YOY, but CPI less shelter at 2.3%; food prices increasing at highest pace since 2009

Data via BLS:

We track the inflation rates on a regular amount, but we also do a bit more than most to drill down. One thing which is not really understood about the CPI, is that it is a quasi housing index. 40% of what makes up the CPI is the shelter component which includes Rent and Owner Equivalent Rent.

Rent tracks housing and apartment rental rates. Owner Equivalent Rent is a survey to homeowners asking them at what price could they rent out their apartment or house.  That is why I track the CPI less shelter.

Headline CPI inflation increased 0.4 %, following a 0.4% jump in December. YOY prices have increased by 1.6%.  If you take out the housing component, prices have increased 2.3%.  Energy increased 7.3% YOY with oil and gasoline at 17.3% and 13.4% respectively.  Food is up 2.1% over the last year and are growing at the highest pace since 2009, but with the recent commodity spike, we will likely see even greater increases.


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