WASHINGTON — Prices for U.S. consumers jumped 6.2% in October compared with a year earlier as surging costs for food, gas and housing left Americans grappling with the highest inflation rate since 1990.
The year-over-year increase in the consumer price index exceeded the 5.4% rise in September.
From September to October, prices jumped 0.9%, the highest month-over-month increase since June.
The Washington Post reports that rising fuel costs and energy prices have led to higher shipping prices for products, and firms are passing the costs on to consumers.
In addition to higher shipping costs, supply chains are still feeling the squeeze from the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, new vehicle prices have risen 9.8% year-over-year, as computer chip shortages have slowed production.
"Along with shelter, used cars and trucks, and new vehicles, the indexes for medical care, for household furnishing and operations, and for recreation all increased in October," the report read.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics says airline fares and alcohol were among the few areas where inflation fell in October.
Inflation is eroding the strong gains in wages and salaries that have flowed to America's workers in recent months.
Rising costs are creating political headaches for the Biden administration and congressional Democrats and intensifying pressure on the Federal Reserve as it considers how fast to withdraw its efforts to boost the economy.