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Consumer prices jump by more than 6%; locals react to rising costs

Published: Nov. 10, 2021 at 10:28 PM CST
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - Consumers are having to fork over more cash to buy everyday items.

“It’s crazy. They’re really high. It’s already hard enough for people as it is for everyday life, ” Arianna Hazlett.

The U.S. Labor Department says prices have jumped by 6.2% over the last year, the highest since 1990.

There are a few reasons for it.

“Inflation tends to be a monetary phenomenon. We have seen a lot more money in the economy,” said James Caton, the assistant professor of Agribusiness at NDSU. “A lot of this currency made it into the economy through fiscal policy which means the government sent us checks and the government is spending money.”

The price for gas is up about 5% in just the last month and 30% from last year.

According to AAA, the average cost per gallon of gas in North Dakota is $3.21.

Prices were disproportionately low last year because of the pandemic, but even in 2019 it just was over $2.50.

“It’s probably almost $80 to a full tank,” said Hazlett. “I can no longer afford a full tank of gas. It’s really upsetting, but it’s a necessity especially when you have kids and appointments to get to.”

It could also cost you more to heat your homes this winter.

The price for US heating oil now runs $3.41 a gallon up more than $1.25 from the year before.

With those increasing energy costs, businesses are having to pay more to make and ship their stuff, but there’s more.

“We have a secondary factor right now, which is bottlenecks in the supply chain,” said Caton.

Less supply means higher costs.

The price of food and rent are also on the rise.

Experts say inflation is likely getting worse before it gets better.

“If you’re thinking about making a big purchase in the spring or the summer, maybe you make that purchase, now,” Caton said.

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