Although inflation has slowed, many Americans still struggle with rising prices
Los Angeles For Robin Lane, the cool air in the communal room of her South Los Angeles apartment building is a welcome relief.
But the July electricity bill jumped 46%. She lives on a fixed income, and can barely cover the basics.
“I have to choose milk one week, eggs the next, it’s very difficult,” Lane told CBS News.
Running the air conditioner in record temperatures is expected to raise energy costs by nearly 12% this summer, according to the National Energy Assistance Managers Association, which is a tight budget for some families.
“There’s a lot of work showing that poor households experience higher inflation,” said Rodney Ramcharan, professor of finance at USC Marshall School of Business. “These people feel it somewhere between 5% to 6%.”
This is because most of a low-income family’s budget goes to necessities, which are still on the rise. rent is up 8% over last year, according to US Bureau of Labor Statistics. During the same period, groceries increased by 3.6%, and electricity increased by 3%.
There is also new evidence of people using credit cards to cover bills. to me First time In the United States, credit card debt has exceeded $1 trillion, according to A a report This week from the Microeconomic Data Center of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
Greg McBride, Chief Financial Analyst, Bankrate.com, said: “When I polled consumers with credit card balances on why, the reason why, emergency and unplanned expenses were the best solution, but even everyday expenses were about one in all. all four”. “It’s a sign of financial distress.”
Paying bills with a credit card isn’t even an option for Line, which said it’s already “completely” behind on at least one bill.
Inflation rose at an annualized rate of 3.2% in July, according to figures released Thursday by the Labor Department. while he achieved 8.5%.The first increase in inflation after 12 consecutive months of inflation was still significantly lower than in July of 2022, when annual inflation