NewsRegionOakland County

Food prices increase in latest CPI report

Posted at 5:49 PM, Jan 12, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-12 18:37:18-05

(WXYZ) — A rise in food prices seen firsthand on store shelves goes hand in hand with the latest Consumer Price Index report or CPI.

Erica Zador and her son Jonah made the rounds at Royal Oak’s Holiday Market to grab the essentials.

“Usually, I don’t pay attention to the prices because I get my normal shopping list for making foods like a mom. But I come here for meats, and I have noticed that the meats are more expensive lately," she explained.

The numbers published by the Department of Labor for the month of December show food prices rose .3 percent.

It's the smallest monthly increase since March of 2021.

Rise or fall, Zador said she’s fortunate she doesn’t have to count every cent.

“I have been in a position where I didn’t have much money, and I know act that’s like when you come to the store with a certain amount," Zador said.

7 Action News spoke with Donna Jackson outside of a different grocer about her spending habits and how inflation impacts her.

"Well, you have to prioritize. I have to anyway now. I'm retired. I'm on a fixed income," she explained.

Jackson recalled, “I wanted to buy butter (and it cost) double. Double. What’s up with that? That’s price gouging."

University of Michigan economic forecaster Gabriel Ehrlich said, “Today’s CPI report was good news but not 100% good news.”

He said the 12-month inflation rate has now slowed down from 9.1% last June to 6.5% in December.

Also, month over month, prices fell in December.

However, Ehrlich said much of that is attributed to falling gas prices which are volatile. So, economists leave out food and gas prices when studying inflation.

“When you’re looking at the future and you’re trying to get a sense of what’s the underlying trend in inflation, looking past food and gas prices can help you get a sense of the trend," he explained.

Ehrlich said the CPI report is good news for the Federal Reserve which means slower interest rate increases this year.