- Inflation has touched every corner of the economy, including goods and services people can’t avoid.
- Prices for food, gas, healthcare, and housing are up big compared with their pre-pandemic levels.
- With inflation running hot through February, it’s likely those staples’ prices will keep surging.
Inflation is running rampant through the US economy, and many of the goods and services with the largest price hikes are the ones most necessary to peoples’ everyday lives.
With the Omicron wave of the COVID-19 pandemic all but over, inflation presents the biggest hurdle for the healing economy. The Consumer Price Index — a closely watched measure of broad inflation — surged 7.9% in the year through February, reflecting the fastest price growth since January 1982 and further acceleration from the pace seen just a month earlier.
Pandemic-era inflation has boosted the prices of seemingly everything, varying from used cars to sneakers. Yet some of the fiercest price growth has happened in areas that Americans just can’t avoid. Staples including food, healthcare, and car travel have gotten less and less affordable over the past year, and the latest data shows no signs of a cooldown.
Wherever you look, red-hot inflation is getting harder to avoid. Here are four areas of necessity where price surges are quickly growing more intense.