(The Center Square)
The federal government released its latest inflation data on Tuesday, drawing new fire for President Joe Biden as the cost of living continues to rise.
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics showed its consumer price index rose 0.5% in January, a 6.4% increase from last year. That’s a big increase from December, when prices rose just 0.1%.
Notably, housing, food and gas costs have risen significantly.
“The index for shelter was the largest contributor to the monthly all-items increase, accounting for about half of the monthly all-items increase, with indices for food, gasoline and natural gas also contributing,” the BLS said.
According to the BLS, shelter spending rose 0.7% in January and 7.9% over the past year.
Prices are now up 14.4% since President Biden took office.
“This past month saw across-the-board increases in shelter, food, and energy costs,” Sen. said Katie Boyd Britt, R-Ala. “Alabama families, retirees and small businesses will be crushed at every turn.”
The energy index rose 2% in January, with a 2.4% increase in gasoline.
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Related: Americans’ Personal Finances Worse Since the Great Recession
As The Center Square previously reported, food and energy costs have risen faster than overall trends, with food costs up 10.1% and energy costs up 8.7% over the past year.
Food costs rose 0.5% in January. Democrats and some experts argue that inflation is cooling, pointing out that the increase is smaller than most spikes during the Biden administration when inflation growth was at its peak.
“Democrats continue to claim inflation is coming down under Biden,” said Rep. Doug Lamborn said. “Do Americans understand that they will never get back the thousands of dollars they spent as a result of their peak 9% inflation? Americans are worse off economically under Biden.
Biden pointed to a 6.4% annual increase, which is down significantly from last year.
“Today’s data shows that annual inflation has been falling for seven months, during which real wages for working Americans and food and gas prices have fallen — giving families breathing room,” Biden said. “Unemployment is at its lowest level since 1969 and job growth will recover.”
As the need for a debt ceiling deal grows, Republicans point to recent inflationary increases to cut federal spending.
“The first step for House Republicans to fight inflation is to stop the wasteful Washington spending that has robbed workers of two months’ pay and jeopardized America’s long-term fiscal health,” said Rep. Jason Smith, R-Mo. “With ongoing negotiations on the debt ceiling, President Biden and congressional Democrats have an opportunity to come to the table and work with Republicans to find common-sense solutions to root out wasteful spending that fuels inflation.”
RELATED: Poll: 60% of Americans Say Biden ‘Hasn’t Accomplished Much’
The Federal Reserve is expected to raise rates this year to combat higher prices.
“Markets are being warned that the inflation report may indicate that even higher rent prices, as gasoline prices rose last month underscore the Fed’s message that more work is needed to tackle inflation,” said Quincy Crosby, chief global strategist at LPL. economic “The futures market understood the Fed’s message and added another rate hike to 2023, with the March and May Fed meetings announcing rate hikes.”
Syndicated with permission from The Center Square.