NJ Prices at Supermarkets, Car Lots Continue to Rise
It may be hard to notice now after many months of rising costs, but the price of most stuff continues to go up.
The latest Consumer Price Index from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows an increase of 6% between Feb. 2022 and Feb. 2023 in the New York metropolitan area, which includes Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Hunterdon, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, and Union counties.
Overall, prices edged up from January 2023 by 0.4%.
According to the data, the cost of shelter — which includes rent — was up 5.6% in Feb. 2023 compared to a year prior. That's a big number, considering that housing occupied 40% of the area's household budget in 2020-2021.
"These are numbers that, locally, we have not seen for some time," said Bruce Bergman, regional economist for the New York-New Jersey Information Office of the BLS.
The latest report represents the 14th consecutive month of increased shelter prices. A streak that long in this area hasn't been since 1979.
At the grocery store, the rate of food inflation is down compared to 2022 as a whole, but prices continue to inch up across a number of categories.
The price of the food you'd buy at the supermarket was up 0.2% in Feb. 2023 compared to the month prior, and up 8.3% compared to a year ago. Year over year, cereal and bakery products cost 11% more today, according to the data. Dairy-related products are about 10% more expensive today.
The cost of food overall, including what you'd pay for meals at a restaurant, is up 7.8%.
In the Northeast today, the average cost of a dozen Grade A large eggs is a little more than $4.75. A year ago, the average price was around $2.15.
Year over year, the price of apparel is about 3% higher. It's up by 0.8% month to month.
New and used vehicles cost about 3% more in February of this year compared to January, and 8.6% more than a year ago.
The price of gasoline is down significantly compared to a year ago.