“This doesn’t spell relief for consumers:” Inflation takes slight dip as prices continue rising, local experts weigh in
DELMARVA – “Inflation bumping down 8.2% to 7.7% doesn’t make a hill of beans in how a family is able to operate in this economy,” Salisbury Area Chamber of Commerce President Bill Chambers said.
That’s right! Inflation taking a downturn now sitting at 7.7%, according to the recent Consumer Price Index (CPI) data released Thursday.
The drop comes after the Federal Reserve’s fourth interest rate increase this year. “Through 2023, I don’t see inflation dropping below 5.5-6%. This is going to be a slow recovery,” Chambers said.
It’s the first time the rate has fallen below 8% since February.
Although inflation has eased up a bit, the chart below of the Bureau of Labor Statistics data shows CPI for items like food and energy actually saw significant increases.
Food alone seeing an 11% increase. Energy saw a biggest jump at nearly 20%. “Unfortunately, this doesn’t spell relief for consumers. So no, what the federal government has been doing and any policies that we’ve seen thus far are not providing the relief that consumers and businesses want to see,” Locklair said.
The question now: when can consumers feel that relief?
Maryland Retailers Association President Cailey Locklair says there’s no clear timeline with things like supply chain issues and employment shortages nationwide still lingering. “So, I think until we address or are able to address quite a few of those issues, I’m not sure what consumers can expect drastically this holiday season,” Locklair said.
Salisbury Chamber of Commerce President Bill Chambers says you can’t forget about local small businesses, as they’ve been hit the hardest by the inflation sting.
He says the rate drop won’t provide them with much of a helping hand but keeping your dollar local will. “Go to your local restaurant, go to your boutiques and others stores to show those people some love and give them your business,” Chambers said.
Inflation slowing down won’t have any good impacts on your holiday dinner, as the Maryland Retailers Association says you can expect to pay even more than you did last year.
The federal reserve is also expected to increase those federal interest rates again in mid-December.