Americans are spending an extra $371 a month because of inflation
Matt Egan, CNN
(CNN) — From rent and groceries to utilities, families are paying a lot more every month as they try to keep up with inflation.
And while inflation has cooled in recent months, the typical household spent $371 more on good and services in December than a year ago, according to Moody’s Analytics.
The good news is that the cost-of-living shock appears to be easing and paychecks are starting to catch up.
At the inflation peak last June, the typical family spent an additional $502 per month compared with the year before, according to Moody’s.
So where is sticker shock hurting the most?
Families are spending an estimated $82.60 more per month on shelter and $72.01 more on food, Moody’s said.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics said Thursday that Americans spent 11.8% more on groceries than a year ago. Egg prices have spiked by nearly 60% over the past year, the biggest annual increase since 1973, in part due to a supply crunch caused by avian flu.
Other items that are costing families more per month include utilities (up $47.33), health care ($17.97 higher), entertainment ($15.27) and alcoholic beverages ($2.67), according to Moody’s.
The bright spot is gasoline, where the typical family saved $1.55 per month compared with the year before.
Some of the pain from inflation is being mitigated by a significant shift in recent months: Wages are finally growing at a faster pace than inflation.
And, at the same time, the pace of inflation has clearly slowed. Consumer prices increased by 6.5% year-over-year in December, the slowest pace since October 2021.
“Meaningful progress in the US economy’s fight against elevated inflation was made in the closing months of the year,” Matt Colyar, an economist at Moody’s Analytics, said in a report on Thursday.